COZMO’S Kickstarter needs $32,284 in the next week…or else!

Kickstarter is a harsh mistress. Since its inception in April of 2009, Kickstarter has held to one simple rule that has confounded, frustrated, and in some cases terrified crowd-fund organizers:

If your campaign doesn’t reach its goal, you get nothing.

So why risk using Kickstarter when other crowd-funding platforms like Indiegogo and GoFundMe allow campaigns to keep all donations made—even if a goal is not reached?

The simple answer is that Kickstarter campaigns, on average, take in about 2.35 times as much as Indiegogo campaigns (and way more than GoFundMe’s). Perhaps this disparity is because Kickstarter backers feel more confident that a project they support will happen rather than fearing their donation night disappear into a crowd-funding black hole if a campaign comes up far short of its goal. Or maybe it’s because Kickstarter does more marketing, has more site visitors, or simply has a better reputation in general for more high-quality projects than other services. Likewise, the same article linked to above says that conversion rates are 3x-4x higher for Kickstarter campaigns than for Indiegogo.

Whatever the reason, Kickstarter has the greater potential payoff, just with an increased risk of getting nothing. Because of this, determining the right amount to set as a goal on Kickstarter is critical. Ask for too much and fail to get there, and you’ve just wasted months of work. Ask for too little, and you might make your goal but wind up with less than you really need.

This was the dilemma facing the folks making episode 2 of COZMO’S (the same folks who made s Star Trek: Renegades and the two-part Renegades: “The Requiem”). They need $100K to make this film, and so that’s what they asked for. And with a week left, their campaign is doing pretty well. So far, 341 backers have pledged more than $67K (including two $10K donors!) to bring them 2/3 of the way there.

But with only seven days left, it’s gonna be a nail-biter!

The producers recently sent out an update reminding folks that episode 2 and beyond will be more serious than the pilot:

Though we understand that the pilot may have been a bit too much on the slapstick side, we wanted to point out that it was directed by Animal House alum, Stephen Furst. He had put his own twist on things, as Hollywood directors often do. Then again, The Orville started out as a comedy and has now pulled back those strings to become more of a Star Trek drama, which most people are loving.

The new episode will lean more toward the dramatic side of storytelling, utilizing a piece of sci-fi literary history penned by Damon Knight that was also used to create an extremely famous Twilight Zone episode. The episode was called “To Serve Man.” Of course, we’ll be throwing in some new twists in the Cozmo’s fashion.

With a cast including Star Trek and sci-fi genre veterans, and amazing make-up and effects by Hollywood professionals, this is a project definitely worth supporting…

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/atomicstudios/cozmos-goes-out-of-this-world-with-ep-2

Help kickstart episode 2 of COZMO’S…from the folks who brought you RENEGADES!

With all of the Star Trek themed fan films out there, some folks have asked why fan filmmakers don’t take the next logical step and use their skills, resources, and crowd-funding successes to make some original content?

Well, someone has done just that…and now they want to do it again!

The folks who brought us Star Trek: Renegades and the two-part Renegades: “The Requiem” cast a collection of Star Trek and sci-fi notables in a completely new sci-fi universe…more specifically, in a dive called Cozmo’s Thirsty Tentacle Bar and Grill. Some of the more notable names in the cast included Ethan Phillips (“Neelix” of Star Trek: Voyager), Robert Picardo (“The EMH Doctor” of Voyager), Aron Eisenberg (“Nog” of Deep Space Nine), and Claudia Christian (“Susan Ivanova” of Babylon 5). The original director was Stephen Furst (Vir from Babylon 5), who tragically passed away shortly after the live action scenes were shot in early 2017.

With the production footage “in the can” (as they say), it was time to raise funds for post-production…with a wildly successful Kickstarter campaign in November of last year that blasted past its $16K goal to finish at a stunning $54.4K from 865 backers! This allowed the pilot for COZMO’S to be completed and released (for backers only) earlier this summer.

Because the series is being shopped around to studios, the full pilot episode is not accessible unless you’re a donor to either the first campaign or the current campaign for episode two (at a level of at least $35). However, the creators have posted the first ten minutes of the half-hour pilot for the public to view. So take a look…

Aside from the obviously high production quality (lighting, sound, camera work, etc.) and the impressive acting, what stands out the most is the amazing combination of make-up and VFX that weaves itself so seamlessly through nearly every scene. Much of this is due to the masterful skills of the make-up team under the supervision of Vincent Guastini, whose professional work in Hollywood includes World War Z, Silent Night, Sushi Girl, I Am Legend, Scary Movie 4, and Dogma.

Would you like Vincent to turn YOU into an alien? Well, guess what! That’s actually one of the very tempting perks being offered in the just-launched Kickstarter for Cozmo’s episode 2…

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/atomicstudios/cozmos-goes-out-of-this-world-with-ep-2

Episode 2 also brings in some exciting changes to the way things were done in episode 1….

Continue reading “Help kickstart episode 2 of COZMO’S…from the folks who brought you RENEGADES!”

COZMO’S Kickstarter asks for $16,000…winds up with $54,397!

I think we can call this one a successful campaign!  The team that produced RENEGADES opened their Kickstarter to fund post-production on their new original series pilot for COZMO’S  to the general public on Tuesday , October 23… having already passed their $16,000 goal!  In fact, by the time they went “live,” donations had actually topped $22,000!

How did they manage that?

They invited supporters on their mailing list—who had already donated more than a million dollars to their previous successful crowd-funders for Renegades)—to get special access to a 48-hour “pre-launch” with exclusive access to certain perks.  Yep, if you’re crowd-funding, it helps to have an existing base of supporters to call on!

It also helps when you have a cast that includes actors from Star Trek and Babylon 5 in your pilot episode:

  • Ethan (“Neelix”) Phillips
  • Robert (“The EMH Doctor”) Picardo
  • Aron (“Nog”) Eisenberg
  • Claudia (“Susan Ivanova”) Christian
  • Plus many other professional actions from sci-fi and related genres

Also, the footage (which was all shot back in early 2017 using sets originally constructed for Renegades‘ “The Requiem”) was directed by Stephen Furst (Vir from Babylon 5…who tragically passed away during June of last year).

The Kickstarter ended its 4-week run reaching $54,397 from 865 backers (including me).  You can read a brief interview with show-runner SKY CONWAY about the production that I posted just as the campaign kicked off.  And if you haven’t checked out the trailer for this hilarious “Cheers in Space” series from sci-fi lovers like you, take 82 seconds to check it out:

The campaign surged past two stretch goals.  At $40,000, fans were able to fund…

  • improved quality of music and postproduction
  • a release of Ralph McQuarrie concept art for Cozmo’s 
  • a release of exclusive Cozmo’s deleted scene #1

Once past $45,000, fans also unlocked…

  • a release of new Cozmo’s THEME SONG
  • a release of exclusive Cozmo’s deleted scene #2

Currently, the plan is to complete and release Cozmo’s by June of 2019 on the Atomic Network and to any donor who contributed $17 or more.

COZMO’S Kickstarter blasts through its $16K goal…BEFORE it even launches???

If only every Kickstarter could be this way!  The 4-week crowd-funding campaign for COZMO’S from the team that produced RENEGADES went live to the general public Tuesday at 11:00 am Pacific Time with a goal of $16,000.  But it had already blasted through that goal and was above $22,00 when the world found out about it.  (Now it’s up even higher at nearly $25,000!)

How the heck did this happen???

Well, it helps when you have an existing database of thousands of fans who contributed to your previous successful crowd-funders for Renegades )to the tune of more than a million dollars!).  And it helps when you open your Kickstarter with a special 48-hour “pre-launch” with exclusive access to certain perks.

It also helps when you have a cast that includes actors from Star Trek and Babylon 5 in your pilot episode:

  • Ethan (“Neelix”) Phillips
  • Robert (“The EMH Doctor”) Picardo
  • Aron (“Nog”) Eisenberg
  • Claudia (“Susan Ivanova”) Christian
  • Plus many other professional actions from sci-fi and related genres

Also, the footage (which was all shot back in early 2017 using sets originally constructed for Renegades‘ “The Requiem”) was directed by Stephen Furst (Vir from Babylon 5…who tragically passed away during June of last year).

The project is billed as “Cheers in Space”…

Cozmo’s Thirsty Tentacle Bar and Grill is a local hotspot—well, local to anyone visiting an asteroid—where an enormous variety of lifeforms visit to party, do business dealings, find work, meet their true love…or just to get drunk and alien-watch. 

The owner of this esteemed establishment is, of course, Cozmo, a four-tentacled alien (played by Ethan Phillips), who has a knack for mixing stellar martinis and giving good advice.  His serving staff includes two humans, Kallie, played by Renee Olstead(13 Going on 30), and Ken, played by Drake Bell (Drake and Josh, Ultimate Spiderman). They’d love their jobs if it weren’t for one tiny detail—humans are the butt of the joke of the entire galaxy.

The hilarity never stops as zany characters like a hermaphrodite with blue hair (Robert Picardo), a crustacean-like madam (Claudia Christian), an alien who’s head is shaped like a….well, like a butt (Aron Eisenberg), and so many others swarm, bump, argue, laugh, and scheme at Cozmo’s!

It looks hilarious (and very well-produced!)…

 

Heck, I threw in $35 myself before lunchtime on Monday!

You can donate by clicking here.

I asked show-runner SKY CONWAY a few questions about the project…

Continue reading “COZMO’S Kickstarter blasts through its $16K goal…BEFORE it even launches???”

RENEGADES “The Requiem, Part 1” now available for free public viewing…mostly!

You might recall back in February that I posted that RENEGADES: THE SERIES (formerly known as Star Trek: Renegades) had released the first part of its two-part debut episode “The Requiem”…but only to donors at a minimum $35 contribution level.

Having been a donor myself, I was able to watch and enjoy the 25-minute long, professionally-made fan production (no, that is NOT an oxymoron!) that starred Walter Koenig as an admiral named “Pavel” and Nichelle Nichols as another unnamed admiral of the “Confederation of Planets.”  The episode also featured a number of other veteran Star Trek actors, including Tim Russ (who also directed the episodes), Cirroc “Jake Sisko” Lofton, Aron “Nog” Eisenberg, Terry “Jadzia” Farrell, Robert “Chakotay” Beltran, and Gary “Soval” Graham.

The new fan film guidelines forced the production to surgically remove all references to the Star Trek universe, but if you go into it with the right mindset, you can kinda mentally edit those changed elements back into a Star Trek narrative.  Or you can try to watch it as an original creative reality unto itself.  Your choice.

Of course, that required one to actually watch it, which was not possible for non-donors…until today.  The ATOMIC NETWORK, which is distributing Renegades, is now offering “The Requiem, Part 1” for FREE exclusively on their website:

http://www.atomicnetwork.tv

There’s just one catch: you have to first sign up for their newsletter by providing your e-mail and SMS (mobile) phone number.  There’s no other commitment, though, and it’s not like you’re signing up for something you’re completely not interested in.  According to their website:

Atomic Network is a premium on-demand streaming service catering to techies, early adapters and sci-fi, fantasy, horror and pop culture enthusiasts. We offer a wide variety of pay-per-view scripted series and advertiser-supported non-fiction programs. At Atomic, there’s always something new for our audience of techies, Trekkies, geeks and gamers — our kind of peeps!

Hey, this could be the start of something big!  In fact, one of their other upcoming sci-fi series, Cozmo’s (starring Voyager‘s Ethan Philips with a cameo by Robert Picardo), is worth checking out the trailer for on this web page.

In the meantime, “The Requiemm, Part 1” has been released to the general public just in time for a new crowd-funding campaign to complete the final bit of work on Part 2.  According to a recent announcement:

Part two is shot, edited and in post production. We are so close! But we need to raise a little more to finance the final mixing, color correction and VFX. 

This final crowd-funding campaign will launch on April 5, and if successful, the producers promise a completed Part 2 within 60 days of reaching their funding goal.  Exciting!