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Kickstarted, a feature-length documentary that offers an incisive look into the crowdfunding revolution, is now available through Vimeo. Written and directed by Jay Armitage and Jason Maxwell Cooper, and produced by Armitage and Cooper in association with J.P. McMahon and Tristan Drew of A Common Thread, the film follows a musician, a filmmaker and a pair of inventors as they pursue their dreams through the transformative and sometimes baffling world of crowdfunding. Kickstarted can also be purchased via kickstartedmovie.com.
Kickstarted reveals the potential and the limitations of crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo through the experiences of real people who’ve turned to the sites to fund dream projects. At the center of the film is Brad Carter, a musician suffering from a neurological disease that took away his ability to play guitar. Carter launches a Kickstarter campaign to help finance the production of the album he hopes to make as he recovers.
The film also follows Dallas King, a filmmaker hoping to raise $75,000 to produce a movie, and a pair of California engineers seeking funding to bring their latest invention to market. Also featured are some of the superstars of the crowdfunding world: Amanda Palmer, LeVar Burton, Emily Best and Ryan Grepper of the Coolest Cooler.
The film offers new insight into the pursuit of the American Dream. “It’s a film about people chasing their dreams,” says Armitage. “Although crowdfunding has given people new tools, it hasn’t made the chase any easier. You still have to give it everything you’ve got to succeed.”
Kickstarted is itself the product of a successful Kickstarter campaign. Cooper, a former producer at NBC, and Armitage, the former principal of an ad agency, used the service to raise $87,000 in 30 days for initial production costs. They followed all or part of eight crowdfunding campaigns and interviewed more than 100 creators and experts. “It’s been a wild ride,” says Cooper, “but we think we’ve put together something that gets to the heart of the modern creative experience.”
Kickstarted was a Gold Award winner at the Spotlight Documentary Film Awards. It was also an Official Selection at the Big Sky Documentary Film Festival, the American Documentary Film Festival, the Glass City Film Festival and New Filmmakers Los Angeles.
Led by Producers J.P. McMahon and Tristan Drew, A Common Thread produces television advertising, feature films, documentaries, music videos and other creative and commercial content. An ardent supporter of independent film, it has produced short- and feature-length projects for a number of new and emerging filmmakers, including The Comments, $50K and a Call Girl: A Love Story and FDR: American Badass.
Directors: Jay Armitage, Jason Maxwell Cooper
Writers: Jay Armitage, Jason Maxwell Cooper
Produced by: Jay Armitage (producer), Jason Maxwell Cooper, (producer), Roger Darnell (co-executive producer), Tristan Drew (producer), Chris Gartin (producer), J.P. McMahon (producer), Kim Sherrell (executive producer)
Partner / Executive Producer
A Common Thread
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