The latest big name to get in the game: Spike Lee, whose remake of Park Chan-wook’s 2003 thriller Oldboy comes to theaters this October. Lee is currently seeking $1.25 million to fund his next joint, a yet-unnamed movie about “human beings who are addicted to blood.” (And no, he adds parenthetically, “it’s not Blacula.”)
Why does an established, Oscar-nominated director need to crowdsource in order to make a movie? Because the independent film world’s climate has changed, according to Lee: “The only way to ensure as an independent filmmaker that your vision is on the screen is when you bring the money to the table,” he says in this explanatory video, helpfully set to the strains of “Fight the Power.”
“My first feature film was She’s Gotta Have It,” he continues. “We shot it in the summer of 1985, 12 days, two six-day weeks, for $175,000. But now, that can’t work.”
Lee expands on this in a letter addressed to the “faithful,” which he also posted on the project’s Kickstarter page:
With the current climate in The Hollywood Studio System it’s not an encouraging look for Independent Filmmakers. I’m not hating, just stating the facts. Super Heroes, Comic Books, 3D Special EFX, Blowing up the Planet Nine Times and Fly through the Air while Transforming is not my Thang. To me it’s not just that these Films are being made but it seems like these are the only films getting made. To The Studios it seems like every Film must be a Home run on a Global scale, a Tent Pole Enterprise, able to spin off Sequel after Sequel after Sequel after Sequel after Sequel after Sequel.
I have a different vision of what Cinema can be, a different vision of what some under-served Audiences might want to see. That is why I am here on KICKSTARTER, to raise the Funds for The New Spike Lee Joint, to get this BAD BOY financed. Nothing in Life is Free and if you want something you got to pay for it. If you have liked any of my Films in the past, this is the price it costs to see another one (which can be less than the cost of one Movie Ticket). We feel the different levels on contributions make it affordable for everyone to GET DOWN FOR THE CAUSE.
Do you wish to see Human Beings dealing with each other on a Human Level? How many more explosions with Ear splitting Sound Effects can you take? C’mon People, please get behind this Joint.
Those who support the nameless film will be entitled to all sorts of fun rewards — including a special “thanks tweet” from Lee himself, an autographed pair of Nikes worn by Lee, an Associate Producer credit, and the biggest ticket of all (for those with $10,000 to spare). Take it away, Spike!
This Award Is For All Playa-Playas. For 10 Grand I’m Taking You to Dinner, Then You Will Have The Honor And Privilege To Sit Next To Me (IN MY WIFE’S TONYA’S SEAT) COURTSIDE — FRONT ROW IN THE BEST SEAT IN THE HOUSE AT THE WORLD’S MOST FAMOUS ARENA — MADISON SQUARE GARDEN TO SEE OUR BELOVED NEW YORK KNICKERBOCKERS, ORANGE AND BLUE SKIES. IF YOU DON’T KNOW THIS IS ONE OF THE TRUE GREAT SPORTING EVENTS TODAY. YOU WILL REMEMBER THIS EXPERIENCE AS LONG AS YOU LIVE. THIS IS A VERY LIMITED ITEM. YOU SLOW — YOU BLOW. THIS IS BIG, BIG TIME. PS. KNICKS WILL BE GREAT THIS COMING NEW SEASON.
Ya dig? Sho nuff.