If Hollywood isn’t afraid of Josh Bernhard and Bracey Smith, they may soon be. They are the first film/television-makers I’ve heard of to crowdsource the funding for their latest project, Pioneer One — not just a TV pilot but an entire series, and not to get the attention of a traditional big media distributor but to bypass big media entirely.
And they need your help.
As you can imagine, $6,000 USD is peanuts for a 45 minute pilot and a planned story arc set to last 28 episodes or more. But as of today they’re only a third of the way there.
Josh and Bracey were previously featured on these pages for their feature film The Lionshare, a drama linking characters together through a ficticious file sharing network, and shrewdly distributed through BitTorrent. So clearly they’ve got the talent and the marketing savvy to make this happen.
The series would be distributed via streaming and downloads by VODO.net, where I first saw the inspiring social media documentary Us Now. And funding for the series is being administered by a service called Kickstarter, which I hadn’t heard of before but seems legit.
What about the series itself? Pioneer One is being pitched as “part political drama, part procedural drama, with a tinge of sci-fi”. You can the read the synopsis of the pilot on the project’s Kickstarter page — here’s how it’s all going to play out:
The pilot is a proof-of-concept for a full first season to be distributed as VODO’s first ‘Original Series’. From there, we have an on-going arc with at least four more seasons’ worth of story to be told. But it all begins with the pilot episode. We need to show potential backers for the series what we can do and what we have in mind.
Here’s where you come in: If everyone who came ’round Monday to read my iPad post kicked in a mere five bucks, Josh and Bracey would have the pilot covered and would be well on their way to funding the next episode. To get you all started, I’ve stepped up to the plate with a $5 donation of my own.
But redirecting the cost of your typical coffee-flavoured dairy drink for just one day can give you the power of a big Hollywood mogul — more in fact, if you consider that projects like this could eventually put said moguls out of business.
Sounds like a bargain to me…