Friday, December 28, 2012

Project Of The Day

Apparently, the film was Indiewire's Project Of The Day yesterday and now there's a chance to vote for Project Of The Week. So YOU know what to do:

The winning filmmaker will receive a digital distribution consultation from SnagFilms and will become a candidate for Project of the Month. That winner will be awarded with a creative consultation from the fine folks at the Tribeca Film Institute!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Making Pledges & Making Music!!

There are NINE Days to go! Eight if you're reading this tomorrow afternoon! And even less if you keep postponing looking at this update. We are still a ways to go from 10k. Quite a Ways! BUT I'm not discouraged because a few people verbally told me they were donating bigger amounts. They just haven't pledged yet. I will be sending nice reminders today. If we can get it to 5k, I have a very generous someone willing to front the rest. What can YOU do to get there? Share the project with your friends and social networks! If you like my work, you will enjoy this movie and I think the film will be a nice intro/surprise for those new to the World of Vincent Gargiulo.

Most everything will happen in Duluth so I'm limited on what I can do beforehand. That said, today I went to the studio to lay down the backing track for one of the film's songs, "A Bear, A Hedgehog, Or A Monkey". Here are two photos of me & one of the Bay Area's finest drummers, Roberta Drake rocking it out. I hope to have a demo to share by next week. Tomorrow, a slide guitarist comes in for the track.

I want to give a BIG THANK YOU to everyone who has contributed to this project. I can't do this without you and really appreciate your support!!!

Vincent Gargiulo

P.S. In other news, I found out my "Muppetless Movie" was accepted into the San Francisco Independent Film Festival!!!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

New Video, Making The News!!

As I sit here listening to some HOT yuletide disco music, I decided I should send an update about the status of the project. First of all, there's a new pitch video on the page. Part pitch, part best-of reel, and another opportunity to explain the project and apologize to Duluth for the title. Given recent events, I also removed any talk of "blowing your brains out." A few people emailed me and were offended by that so now there's a video you can share that probably won't upset anyone! Hooray!!

I made the Duluth news again. Here's a report from Fox News 21 asking residents of what they think of the title. It's actually a semi-favorable piece.

Actually, I've been befriended and emailed by many citizens who seem very nice and excited about the project. A lot of the latest backing activity has come from there. I'm no longer worried about finding talent or help. There will be plenty. Someone even recommended a good place for the karaoke scene. I'm told there are alot of mullets to be found there. Perfect!! I'm excited to meet & work with Duluthians on this movie.

I was feeling a little down this weekend about the status of the project. It's true we're far from my goal. But I'm committed to get it going and get the word out. I'll be sending more emails, more tweets, more Facebook posts, more everything. It's always better to try & fail, then give up. And with your help, we can get it out even more. So please share the project around. Part of the reason for adding clips of greatest hits to the pitch reel was to remind people "Hey, I make pretty good stuff. That gets views & exposure. And I'm not stopping."

THANK YOU for backing the project and your support. 17 Days to raise 9k. Let's do this!!!

- Vincent

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Decision Time

If you plan on making a pledge, don't wait! I seem to be going through the "empty restaurant" syndrome. "Might be good, but not very popular. I'll pass." Keep in mind, you don't pay now. You only pay when the project meets the goal, in Jan.

In fact, here's a challenge for anyone reading this blog: I ask that you each contribute $5. That's a beer for your buddy or a tip for a video well done. It's not much on it's own but it'll add up.

To be frank, I absolutely HATE this entire Kickstarter process and if we don't even get at least 30% (3,000) by next week, I'm likely to abort the mission. Begging & spamming my friends is not something I enjoy and goes against everything I've ever done. Should the campaign fail, I may start an Indie Go-Go campaign where at least I'll get whatever money is donated. Perhaps should have done that in the first place. It's all a learning experience. Thanks to everyone's support.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

A Few Unthrilled

Perfect Duluth Day decided to run my Kickstarter campaign on their site which I very much appreciate. According to the comments, some of the locals are not very receptive:

I seem to have ahem, struck a nerve. It's all completely true that I've not been to Duluth, nor know all that much about it. But that's why I want to go. I honestly didn't expect Duluthians to be that willing to help and I'm sorry to upset anyone. It's just a comedy.

I'm just a small independent filmmaker doing his thing. I might not make my Kickstarter goal but I'm gonna try. And if I fail, I'll make the film anyway. And the reason Duluth is horrible in the film, is because the lead character's girlfriend dumps him there. Anywhere is horrible if you have a broken heart.

So Duluth I'm sorry and I hope you'll forgive me in time. I leave you with a comment left on the Kickstarter page:

UPDATE: A few other locals have reached out to me and have been very nice, offering to be actors, show me around, and (my favorite) buy me beer!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Your Money & Me

If I could turn back time (sing along), I would change the Kickstarter goal to something slightly less. A full $10,000 will be needed but it seems so far away. Also I think people don't understand that it's all or nothing. I only get your donation if I reach the 10k goal. I explained today to someone why that much would be needed and thought I'd relay that info here as well:
  • Travel & Living Costs: Money for me to get there & live there for up to a month. I'll need food, clothing, and transportation to get around.
  • Actors: The actors need food, costumes, and some even get paid. 
  • Equipment & Crew: I'd like to shoot this on a nice HD camera. One I was going to rent when I get there or possibly even buy with the support of my savings. There will be a sound man too who obviously will need compensation. Money is also an incentive to have crew & actors brave the elements to help make this. 
  • Insurance: Filming in certain locations usually requires liability insurance. Plus in the potential harsh climate, equipment insurance would be good to have too. 
  • Post: When the movie's all shot, it'll need to get edited, have a post sound mix, & have original music added. $$$
  • Marketing: It's not enough to make a film anymore, you have to market it too. So some money goes to festival submissions costs, DVDs, and other promotional material. Also considering hiring a publicist to get word out more.
  • Kickstarter Itself: Did you know they take a cut? As does Amazon Payments? Plus all the money to make the rewards. I may have the DVDs sitting around but I gotta mail them.
In short, it adds up. Any contribution helps. But don't take my written word for it. Watch me say it to you:

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Prelude To The Introduction To The Beginning

Yesterday I got off the bus and thought "Gee, it's cold. I don't like cold." And then I thought, "Wait, I'll be in Minnesota in February for potentially all 28 days" and thought I shouldn't complain about our mild 40 degrees. So I'm a California boy, born & raised in Stockton, CA where it gets 100+ degrees in summer. I like heat. I've been informed I will need a complete wardrobe makeover and simply walking around without a jacket in SF will not be enough preparation.

I'm Vincent Gargiulo, a filmmaker who makes strange videos. Deeply inspired by Monty Python, classic cartoons, foreign films, bad vhs tapes, and something called music, I've been making stuff consistently since 2007. Each year the films get bigger and I get slightly more acclaim. Slightly. I have a day job which helps pay for these things. For my next project I decided to do an experiment - see if other people will give me money.

I currently have a Kickstarter campaign going on. Launched it a few days ago. Check it out if you'd like to see what I look like in a labcoat. The film is called "Duluth Is Horrible" and is a series of vignettes showing a few lonely people searching for a connection in a bleak winterscape. In it's 20 minutes, you'll see the aftermath of a breakup from both sides, an older zookeeper on a online date, a Redditor complaining about his cat, a karaoke scene, a disillusioned Sex Chat girl, 5 people dressed as Carmen Miranda, a call from Enterprise Car Rental, and a little Disney magic thrown in for good measure.

I'll be using this blog to discuss my success (or possible non-success) of my campaign. Hopefully, it will succeed and I'll be able to continue talking about the film as it goes full force in production.

So far, I find Kickstarter extremely stressful. If you don't get pledges, you worry "Oh god, what can I do? This will never work. I have to do more! But what!? I'm lost. I'm confused! Please donate something" and start crying profusely. On the opposite side, I am amazed by the support of the people who do donate (some friends, some not) and think "You like me. You really like me!" I shouldn't take it so personal, but we know that's not easy. Especially for "artists." We're still early in the process. They say successful campaigns raise 30% within the first week which means 3K by next Wednesday. Possible. Perhaps.

Anybody out there in the internet have Kickstarter tips? I'd love to hear them. We got the video. We got the social media. We got the Spam. Now what?