Kickstarter: Big Money Edition
In the past we have discussed that Kickstarter is, both in terms of individual projects and the site as a whole, not only netting more money, but doing it faster and faster than ever. Records are being broken in various categories on a regular basis. Six figure payouts are no longer uncommon.
Recently there were a couple ultra high grossing projects that made popular media in circles that Kickstarter projects usually don’t travel in. I’m sure you know what I’m talking about (but if you don’t keep reading.)
Recently two projects for movies scored seven digits from their fan bases on Kickstarter. Veronica Mars was the first, raising over 5 million dollars to finish an (apparently) popular television series as a movie. After it completed funding, Zach Braff launched his own project, Wish I was Here, to fund the sequel to his previous indie hit, Garden State; so far it has raised more than 2 million dollars, and has several more weeks to go.
This is normally the part where I would start ranting angrily about how they don’t need our money, and could get conventional financing for these conventional projects, but I’m conflicted. This situation makes me think of nothing more than Farscape. Farscape was a sci-fi show that seemed to be under constant threat of cancellation during it’s run. By concerted efforts of it’s fans (Crackers do matter) the show managed to squeak out 4 seasons and a made for TV movie. If crowd funding had been around then, it might have gone on longer.
I certainly would have given till it hurt.
So while I’m sure Zach Braff could make his movie without his fans help (and needing money is an important element in my personal Kickstarter ethos,) I find it hard to begrudge his fans wanting to help him out in that regard. The real question becomes: how will this change things? make no mistake, the ability to see real money (money measured in millions) for popular projects is likely to have a serious ripple effect. Retro and nostalgia are powerful forces in crowdfunding – I may even see an effort to revive my beloved sci fi shows of yore.
My only concern is that the big project may start to crowd out the little ones, but only time will tell. So what do the rest of you think? Is raising millions for movies good or bad for crowdfunding? Does it legitimize said funding, or is our favorite platform selling out? I really want to hear your thoughts on this one; the future is now.