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Veronica Mars fans got more than just their movie. They may have just started a new era of film funding.
The Veronica Mars movie will go down in history as the first major studio release funded by fans. It’s like an indie project with a major property that’s already earned studio distribution. Thanks to the support of star Kristen Bell and creator Rob Thomas, the CW show will be revived for the big screen.
Less than 24 hours ago, Bell told Entertainment Weekly that a Kickstarter project would be launched with 30 days to reach $2 million. Within 12 hours, the project reached $2 million and it’s still climbing. At the moment, it’s up to $2.5 million and there’s 29 days left.
It’s almost as if Thomas didn’t even need to come up with the ingenious list of bonuses for fans. If you donated just $10, you are promised a shooting script PDF the day the production starts, which is set for this summer. One person who donated $10,000 was even guaranteed a line in the movie.
Bell and Thomas also seemed shocked that this happened so quickly, based on their tweets. Bell, who is ready to have her baby at any moment, even joked, “all this excitement is prolly gonna send me into early labor.” Later she wrote:
dear pope: Im sorry VM fans stole ur thunder on ur 1st day. I mean,Im not really that sorry,but i thought it would be polite 2 say so. xo
— Kristen Bell(@IMKristenBell) March 14, 2013
So what was all this excitement about, anyway? Veronica Mars aired on the CW for just three seasons from 2004 to 2007. It was a critical favorite, even though it earned poor ratings. It’s rabid fanbase, which came out in force Wednesday, have been waiting and hoping for a movie for years and now they’ve made it happen themselves.
It will be interesting to see if this is just an anomaly or if Warner Bros. does this again with other properties. A billion dollar company obviously doesn’t want to make a movie that they aren’t sure if there is a built-in audience for, so this could be a great way to gauge interest. So, Chuck fans need to start a campaign now if we want to see a movie.