Editorial: The Case against Kickstarting the VERONICA MARS Movie

by     Posted 1 year, 170 days ago

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Yesterday, Rob Thomas launched a Kickstarter for a film adaptation of his cult TV series, Veronica Mars.  The goal was 30 days to reach $2 million.  The Kickstarter quickly reached its goal in less than a day, and of this posting has received $2.8 million in donations.  Some people celebrated this not only as a way to finally get a Veronica Mars movie, but as a new dawn for financing mainstream feature films.  Personally, I felt everything about it was a bit…off.  I couldn’t quite place my finger on it, but as I’ve spoken with more people and read other editorials discussing the Kickstarter’s success, I’ve become more inclined to believe that Warner Bros., the studio that owns Veronica Mars, has gamed the system, misled fans, and opened a door to diminishing the spirit of Kickstarter in order to serve corporate interests.

If you haven’t already written me off for being an inherently pessimistic person, hit the jump for why I’m against Kickstarting Veronica Mars.

veronica_mars_kristen_bellA brief disclaimer: I want to look beyond the individual project, and not make this about Veronica Mars, but the larger implications of what its Kickstarter means.  As for my personal feelings on the show itself, I’ve seen all three seasons, I liked the first season, but found it to be a series of diminishing returns.

Furthermore, I’m appraising the facts as they currently stand.  I don’t believe all the cards are on the table at this point, but I’m drawing the best conclusions I can from the information we currently have, which is what everyone writing these kinds of editorials is also doing.

Earlier today, Scott Beggs over at Film School Rejects wrote an article in favor of the Kickstarter, and I would like to take the opportunity to rebut his arguments:

1)    It took courage to kickstart a Veronica Mars movie because what if it had flopped?

Then people would find out that Veronica Mars wasn’t as popular as they thought.  Fans would remain fans, and the indifferent would remain indifferent.  It would only affect the perception of Veronica Mars, and Thomas should be proud of his show no matter what happens on Kickstarter.

2)    Beggs compares the “hand-wringing” over the Kickstarter to opposition over remakes. 

That feels like apples to oranges.  A remake is still owned by the corporation and they’re free to do with it what they want.  The original still exists, and it’s the corporation’s right to spend their money as they see fit.  It’s their money.

3)    Veronica Mars is an “ultra rare phenomenon”. 

Actually, it’s not.  Fans have been campaigning to get back the TV they love for decades.  Read Matt Zoller Seitz article over at Vulture for the number of shows that have attempted and succeeded at resurrection or continuation.  The assumption that the success of Veronica Mars won’t open the floodgates of other resurrections undermines Beggs’ argument.  Either Mars is important or it’s not.  Executives like to copy the successes of others (in that way, his remake argument is apt).

4)    “Who is any single person to tell fans who to give their money to?”

Fans are free to spend their money how they want.  I’m free to chastise them for their purchases.  They’re not immune from criticism.

5)    “If someone has waited a decade for a new Firefly series, isn’t $35 for a t-shirt and a digital download a steal at twice the price?”

A t-shirt made in Taiwan costs about a dollar to make, and digital downloads are cheap.  I don’t know if it’s the fan doing the stealing in this case.

6)    It’s ridiculous to think Veronica Mars is taking away from any other Kickstarter.  If anything, it makes Kickstarter even more popular.  A rising tide lifts all ships.

I would agree that no Kickstarter is necessarily hurt by the success of Veronica Mars, but I highly doubt they would benefit.  Kickstarter is already pretty well known, and even if it’s not, its recognition doesn’t automatically lead to users funding smaller projects.  Kickstarting Veronica Mars is the multiplex invading the art house.  Indies don’t make more money because they’re playing at the same theater as a blockbuster.  People want to spend their money on what they feel is their best bet.  Veronica Mars is a known quantity to its fans.

7)    Yes, it was easier to sell Veronica Mars, but it’s unfair to criticize it for being good at Kickstarter.  It’s still “a creator selling the public on a vision”.

The vision was already sold, and this leads to one of my biggest problems with Veronica Mars muscling in on Kickstarter.  Veronica Mars had its shot.  It was made by the studio system.  It was funded by a major studio, and played on network television.  It couldn’t sustain an audience on even the miniscule CW network, and its DVD sales weren’t great.  In the fair market that Beggs celebrates earlier in his piece, Veronica Mars was deemed only good enough for a cult fanbase.

Thomas tried for years to get a movie made, but Warner Bros., looking at the numbers, decided there wasn’t enough interest.  Rather than leave it at that, Thomas took his established project and his fans, and brought them to a new marketplace that’s built around movies that never even got a head start, which is why they need to be kick-started.

And this isn’t really Thomas, but Warner Bros. pulling the strings.  I was talking with Badass Digest‘s Devin Faraci last night, and he made the good point that if this was Thomas trying to buy the rights back, it would be a different story.  But he still has the corporate support of Warner Bros., which will do the legwork of distribution, marketing, etc.  This isn’t “the star quarterback joining the chess club and turning out to be a natural” as Beggs argues.  This is the privileged kid deciding he didn’t want to use his own money to buy something, so he used his popularity to get people to donate.

veronica-mars-tv-posterIf you want to believe that a Veronica Mars movie only costs $2 million (and it doesn’t; as Devin also pointed out to me, the cost of unions makes things more expensive and Warner Bros. has contracts with the unions; I don’t know how Warner Bros. can own the property but then go outside their own system), then you have to believe that Warner Bros. was pleading poverty when they said they couldn’t spend $2 million on a movie, and the Veronica Mars Kickstarter pages makes no mention of how the studio plans to market the film to a larger audience.

This is where the Kickstarter page starts getting misleading, and studios could use this same kind of slight-of-hand to con fans into thinking that the cost of making a studio picture is as simple as buying any other product.  Warner Bros. isn’t in the business of making only $20 million total on a picture.  No major studio is.  That’s perceived as a flop.  When Kevin Smith disingenuously raged against marketing costs and that’s why he was four-walling Red State (remember that game-changer?), he neglected to mention that marketing is leverage.  If you take a $2 million movie like Veronica Marsand take only the people who are fans and spreading word of mouth, you’ll maybe get $4 million at best, although as of this posting, even if all 46,738 backers bought a $10 ticket, the movie would only make $467,380.  If you pour in $20 million into marketing, you might get $40 million back.  That’s the risk the studios take, and that’s why they only do ad blitzes: so they can get the biggest audience possible.

Fans that are funding the Veronica Mars movie are basically buying a ticket twice, and the film is only marginally for them.  It’s for Warner Bros., and I have difficulty believing Warner Bros. will adhere to the terms laid out on the Kickstarter page.  Not even VOD titles open theatrically and then release for digital distribution a few days later.  They work the other way around.  Are we supposed to believe that Warner Bros. will go to the trouble of prints and advertising (P&A) only to cut themselves off at the knees after one weekend?  Furthermore, the Kickstarter page also doesn’t specify how wide the studio will release the film, so if you live in a small town and want to see the Veronica Mars movie on the big screen, you might not get what you thought you were paying for.

Kickstarter can conceivably be both for indies and studio films, but the latter feels like exploitation of the fans.  Yes, the fans are free to spend their money however they see fit, but shouldn’t their money at least pay for the cost of a ticket?  This reminds me of when Universal was “test-screening” Serenity and fans were paying to attend a screening of an unfinished film.  Any other movie test-screens for free, but Universal took advantage of a fandom’s “support”.  Warner Bros. will ease their own financial burden on Veronica Mars while double-charging fans.

If fans want to be double-charged, that’s their business.  As we’ve been told, no one can tell them how to spend their money.  I’m glad the fans are getting their movie, but they don’t seem like the big winners here, and neither do indie films on Kickstarter.  The big winner is a studio that gauged interest by making fans pay, and will now run away with their money.  Warner Bros. is entitled to profit, but it’s uncomfortable seeing a studio walk away from the risk but still reap the reward.

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  • Mars

    Veronica Mars is like the Mitt Romney of Kickstarter.

  • bapi

    Sorry but sounds lile you just want to critize them I can do whatever I want with my money.

  • zac

    wow for once u actually u make a valid arguement haha (all the other times ie reviews no) but hey u got my vote!

  • Andrew

    I don’t see the differnce between this or when a kick starter gets a celebrity to back a project. From what I’ve seen on the site: the projects either have some kind of celebrity back (David Fincher) or celebrity interest or its just going out to family and friends. It takes all the work out of independent films by having people making one pitch without having the face to face value or really any risk.

    I would much rather show m support to Veronica Mars or Firefly or something i would actually watch than some random shitty student short. You make it seem like a crime that Thomas likes his property but he should and he should be able to fight. If the movie bombs, it bombs but all this hate since the kickstarter was successful just seems like kids complaining that the cool kid thought of something first and succeeded

    • Nate H

      I think his point is that a major studio is using Kickstarter. It’s fine that Rob Thomas wants to start up the movie, but he doesn’t own the rights – WARNER BROS DOES. So this major studio needs to get fans to pay for this film? A studio that, for example, had the money to spend $200 million on the Hobbit (part 1 of 3)??? That’s pretty bogus. That’s like Bill Gates saying “I’m going to make a new version of Windows, but only if PC users donate $2 million to get me started.” That would be RIDICULOUS. Sure, you would be free to pay for the development of it and then you could pay again to buy it, but the principal of it is all wrong. So I have to say I agree with the article.

  • Errol

    Well put Matt, you make some good points. I am also a bit skeptical about this whole Kickstarter campaign and even though people are free to spend their money how they want etc., etc., I can’t help but feel fans have been played here. Oh well, I guess time will tell how this pans out in the long run.

  • Matty

    Nice to know the FNL movie won’t need a kick starter.

  • Matt

    The only place I’ll differ with you is number 5. Unless you decide to physically steal a t-shirt or pirate a movie, you’ll be spending $35 no matter what – T-shirts aren’t exactly $9.99 at Hot Topic, so saying that fans are getting screwed because of capitalism is weak. They WOULD be spending exactly the same amount of money either way.

    That being said, I see merit in the rest of your argument. Obviously it will cost more than five million (which is what this will eventually make on Kickstarter, I’m sure) to make and push the film, but unless Thomas is a total idiot, this campaign would never have been started unless WB already had a contract with him to do the movie anyway. This is simply $5 million that they don’t have to get from a Producer who would then be entitled to a percentage of the profits.

    Sure they have to give away DVDs, posters etc., but as you said, those cost five cents to make at most. Also, I’ve never seen Veronica Mars. Most people (as you pointed out) weren’t huge fans. BUT this Kickstarter campaign is on the front page of every news website. FOR FREE. Just based on how unusual this is, it will get box office draw when it’s released. Hell, I’M interested in seeing it now.

    I’ll be very interested to read in a year about how this happened and what the WB contract entailed. It may not exactly be the future of how things get made, but I like where it’s headed. Between ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT coming back on Netflix and this, it shows that there is definitely something different going on.

    I’m gonna go start a Kickstarter account to bring back CAR 54, WHERE ARE YOU?

  • A

    “I’m free to chastise them for their purchases. They’re not immune from criticism.”

    this just sounds dickish. It’s my money and if I want to spend it on something like this then why should you chastise me? It’s my money…..

    That’s like me buying a BMW and you saying that I’m wrong because I could have just bought a Honda. But why would you even bother because it’s me who is spending the money not you

    • John

      No, it’s like BMW asking you to pay to manufacture their cars, which they will then charge you for again when you actually go to buy it.

      • FilmIsObsolete

        Exactly! When the movie comes out all these people will need to pay for tickets and dvd/blu rays eventually.

      • Super Mario

        Not quite. It’s more like BMW asking you to pay to manufacture a BMW that’s designed to your specifications and then asking you to pay again to buy it.

        People are donating money because they want a film of their beloved TV show to be made. This is literally the only way it will happen. God forbid people get excited about that.

      • Radiationman

        It’s not building a BMW to your specifications…you’d be paying to have a car you like manufactured, and then paying for it again on the lot.

        This movie is pretty much going to be whatever WB wants it to be, regardless of the fans opinions…even the ones who’ve forked over money to get the movie made. and I’m sorry, but if I “INVEST” in a movie, I expect returns…

        Also, Your money may be your money…but if your buying a mountain of horse crap when you live in an appartment complex in the city…I’m going to say you screwed up…money poorly spent is money poorly spent.

      • Reply Man

        Why do people keep saying fans have to pay twice? I bought in at the $35 level, will watch the digital download when its released, and be happy, just like I have when I have purchased and watched any other pre-release or in theater now digital download. Where is this idea that I have to pay twice? Maybe if I like the digital download enough and have an urge to see it in theaters I will, but if this had been a 100% studio project, and they released the movie as VOD, and I watched and liked it on VOD and wanted to see it in theaters, i’d be in the exact same boat. Actually not quite the same, since VOD of pre and current release movies don’t let you keep the digital download, and in this case I can.

    • andrew

      How someone spend their money affects more than just that person, buying a product affects the economy of that country (your car example), buying a used/bootlegged product doesn’t finance those who actually created it, a company can use the profits to fund something controversial (Chic-Fill-A). I agree you’re not “wrong”, but you’re not immune from criticism.

  • John

    Spot on, Matt. I agree with nearly everything discussed in your article. As you said, WB seems to have exploited the Kickstarter system and will now benefit from the generosity of movie lovers while minimizing their own risk.

    It would be wonderful if fans get their Veronica Mars movie, but I’m not going to contribute to this and I think those who do are either unable or unwilling to think about what they are doing here.

    Giving money to help an independent filmmaker to complete his/her movie is one thing, but donating to a studio is another thing entirely. Harry Potter, Batman, Superman, The Hobbit… I’m sure WB is doing just fine financially without our help.

    The one good thing that could possibly come out of fans financing a studio movie would be if the studio stayed out of the process and let the filmmakers have complete freedom. But I highly doubt that will happen.

  • Marshmallow

    I’m a fan. I gave money. I know that my money isn’t going to be returned. I guess I don’t understand why people care.

    Tee shirts cost a dollar to make…well duh. But, I’d like to see you walk into any department store in the United States and buy a shirt (that you want) for a dollar. Complaining of markup is ridiculous.

    I actually think the Veronica Mars fandom IS special and rare. And I hope the other people in the fandom don’t go around looking for reasons to try to take down other fandoms because it is rude and stupid to disparage people for liking different things.

    I’m not hurting any charities by giving to this campaign. In fact, I’ve given time and money to all the charities in the last month that I normally do.

    I’m not hurting any other kickstarter campaigns, because I give money to other kickstarters regularly, when I want to see what they are offering. Because that’s what is happening here. Something we’ve been wanting for six years finally has the opportunity to be made. Yeah, it’s only if we help fund it. Well, as a person who thinks art (even popular art) needs to be cultivated, I am willing to do so.

    Rob has been quite clear that the movie will be limited release. And that he’ll try to focus the release in places that had heavier kickstarter funding. That’s in the fine print, if people actually took the time to read it. If they didn’t, well, that’s the problem with people not reading the fine print in ANY situation. And I’m sure Warner Brothers will have caveats on their distribution, but what we want is the ending. And we’ve gone through six years and tons of letter-writing, phone-calling, email blasting, and twitter-trending campaigns to get it. I’m sure Warner Brothers will be happy to finally be rid of us.

    Honestly? Kristen Bell spends a ton of time and money supporting charity. And she’s been a champion to our fandom for all these years that we’ve been begging her, Rob, Warner Brothers, and anyone that will listen for a conclusion to our beloved show.

    This was the only way we could get the ending we wanted, and I am happy to be part of that.

  • Grayden

    I agree with Goldberg. Even though people can do with their own money as they wish, ultimately they’re being bought before they even see the product their buying. For your everyday things like a musician’s album, or a new invention, it works fine that way because it’s something to help someone else or advance our lives, albeit in a small way. Crowd-funding a movie gets the fans nothing. Regular investors will get their money back, hopefully, and then some. The actors will get paid and royalties if they’re lucky. 90 minutes in a theater is all a fan will get, for twice what they will pay when they actually see it in a theater. The studios are pulling the heartstrings of the nostalgic in an effort to make them prove they’re a fan and willing to see the movie before they even make the movie. It’s not something I want to see studios do in the future, because I don’t want a potentially awesome film held for ransom by the studio until we all crowd-fund it. We shouldn’t have to put a down payment and then still have to pay to see it later. If we do, I want to get my dollar value donated returned to me, in equivalence of free tickets.

    • Alan B

      “Crowd-funding a movie gets the fans nothing.” except a T-shirt, script, digital download, a walk-on part etc.

      • Jenne

        Crowd-funding also gets us a movie we can watch over and over and over! I’ve already paid for my digital download and my DVD (and script, poster, etc.) and next year, I will happily pony up money to a theater to watch it with my excited fellow Marshmallows. The funding for movies does not cover theater expenses, so it doesn’t make sense for the lower-level rewards to also include tickets to random theaters, especially when they don’t even know where it will be screened. When I pitched in to help fund a movie that was screened last year, that reward didn’t include tickets either. (VM is the fifth project I’ve pitched in for on Kickstarter. I also fund stuff on IndieGoGo when I find money. Like science and stuff.)

        While I’m here, I really think the implication in one of the points that VM’s audience is too small kind of misses the point of Kickstarter. While the concept of VM might be owned by an “evil” large corporation, it’s also still a small project that doesn’t appear to have wide, generic appeal. Frankly, I’m glad WB was willing to give this a chance.

    • INSTANT JUSTICE

      As far as I recall, traditionally, we don’t get to see a film before we pay to see it either….there ain’t that much difference. How many times have you seen a trailer that was nothing like how the film turned out?

      • Grayden

        There’s a thing called a trailer. And nowadays we have these things called “set visits” and “interviews” with cast members before the film comes out so we get all kinds of info about the film beforehand. You don’t go into a movie blind these days unless you absolutely choose to. Crowd-funding is blind investing, which is really no different than regular funding of films except all the rich people who normally give the money don’t want to, so the studio figures the fans are big enough suckers to give their own money to fund a film. And they did. I kinda hope this backfires on the studio.

      • Alan B

        “There’s a thing called a trailer.” You also mean to say that people lived without reading Collider “set visits”? Wow, what an ignorant, uninformed time in which those people lived in.

  • Alan B

    Jesus! There is a stunning level of arrogance in Goldberg’s argument that can only come from an uninformed blogger with zero life skills and world experience (Devin Faraci also gets mentioned in the article, which sounds about par for course). People are actually free to do whatever the hell they want with their money, and no arrogant brat like Goldberg should be able to suggest otherwise. I know that Goldberg says that he understands this (“Fans are free to spend their money how they want”), but his ENTIRE ARGUMENT is based on the idea that other people don’t understand, that they’re ignorant and need the likes of Matt and Devin to tell them otherwise. They don’t. The world existed quite fine without the Matts and the Devins of the world explaining how what they are doing is wrong, and it will function (better) when both have long gone. No one is actually required to pledge money, and they receive something in return for pledges: e.g. for $35, you get the script, a T-shirt and a digital download. I don’t know what’s worse: Matt’s complete and utter lack of talent, intelligence or wit as a writer, or his growing conceit?

    • Anonymus

      I agree! Beautifully said. If we say it loud and long enough, perhaps Goldberg will finally shut up…or even quit!!

  • eternalozzie

    wow … what a knuckle dragging homophobic piece of work. John’s Caudle’s life must be pretty miserable.

  • DPW

    Great article and great insights.

  • MARSHMALLOW 4 LIFE!!!

    Yes, obviously us fans will have to pay for the movie in addition to donating. But its the same as people seeing a movie multiple in theatre. But with the case of the donating, the majority of fans will get either an actual dvd copy or a digital copy. So we won’t have to actually pay to see the movie unless we want, since we will be getting the dvd/digital around the time the movie comes out. I probably will see it once in theatre, then a million times in the comfort of my own home.

  • mattedscreen

    Gotta agree with Matt on this one, there is no guarantee for a finished product even. While I contributed proudly to the Rifftrax Twilight Live Riff Kickstarter, they at least upped the anti on the return on investment and openly stated that while they may not secure the rights to Twilight, they will try their best to get the worst Hollywood movie made on screens and give a VOD copy back to the fans, min you had to donate was $20 to get a copy of whatever the 2013 show would be in addition to a slew of other goodies including free Rifftrax downloads, shorts, etc. And with that I think Matt hit the nail on the head, Rifftrax isn’t backed by a major studio, Veronica Mars IS. It’s business to Warner Brothers and in the end if the dollars and cents don’t add up into the plus columns, you can NOT expect them to continue with the project. Nor can you expect them to give up the rights so another studio could. As exciting as watching a Kickstarter campaign get going, gain traction and succeed is, it’s especially important to not lose your head and donate thousands of dollars without a clear indication of commitment by a studio…but that said, I do have to admit, I would contribute A LOT to a Deadwood Kickstarter.

  • Brazil boy

    Diminishing returns?!
    MENDOZZAAA!!!!

  • James

    You must be fun at parties.

  • Katy

    I love movies. I love Veronica mars the series. And I don’t think your decision to post this is bad, but you are making me feel bad for supporting something I love. As a fan this is heart breaking because now I feel like you’ve unintentionally tainted this project before its even completed.

  • Pingback: Warner Bros. Greenlights VERONICA MARS Movie, Production Budget to Come from Kickstarter | Collider

  • Herb Wight

    There are some valid points made in the editorial, but it kind of falls apart under its own weight. The comment about people not being immune to criticism for spending money of what they desire really doesn’t sit well. It’s truly nobody’s damn business how a person legally spends his or her money. Is it so much different than buying those DVD box sets, or silly merchandise to support something you love?

    I understand the argument about Warner Bros. potentially rigging the game, and it does hold some weight. But I believe there’s a failure to understand that this seems to have been the only way to get the project done, when push comes to shove. There may have been other avenues to explore, but this is what both parties agreed to, and that means that fans get something they’ve wanted for a long time.

    I really don’t like the argument that the show had its chance but couldn’t sustain an audience, as if a television show (or film, or album, or book) had never been under-appreciated initially. I look at a show like “The Wire,” which had a steady, devoted following, but little else during its run. But now, the show has grown in stature and reputation in its years away from television to the point that it is widely regarded as one of the true great shows that was criminally under-seen when it was on the air. Perhaps people found out about “Veronica Mars” late, and fell in love with the show years after it was on. Don’t discount the fact that a product can gain more fans after it ceases to be creating anything new.

    I do not believe, for a moment, that this is taking anything away from other projects on the site. I don’t think that people are wringing their hands over which project to donate to. If you find something you want to support, you will do it – that pesky idea of spending your money on what you want, regardless of what others think. Do I think this will revolutionize the industry? No. But it’s pretty interesting that this is happening at all, and that warrants notice.

    I have zero stake in this as I watched the show (got it from the library, so I didn’t spend a penny on it), and thought it was fine. Nothing more. But I feel great for the fans – those who have donated, and those who have not – because they get something that they’ve wanted for a very long time.

    Maybe, instead of focusing on the capitalistic crap (it’s America – get used to it) and big wigs counting the dollars, we should focus on the victory for the “little guy” – the fans. Sometimes, there is overlap. While Warners gets to have their cake and eat it, too (no real sacrifice, but potentially a bit of gain), the fans get a film that was, just days ago, little more than a collective pipe dream.

    Congratulations to all the VM fans, who are getting exactly what they want.

  • Anonymus

    Bravo John, bravo! Drive Goldberg out on a rail. I couldn’t have said it better myself sir! Beautifully done.

  • Anonymus

    The words Unintentional and Taint do more to describe Goldberg than anything else anyone has said on here. Bravo!

  • Keith

    How dare people pay to get something they want! Terrible state of affairs…

  • INSTANT JUSTICE

    If you read my post again, I think you’ll notice I mentioned the word ‘trailer’ which are not always a good indicator of what a film will be like. You still don\’t get to see the film before you pat for it unless you get it ‘illegally’.

    If you’ve ever perused a wide spread of decent Kickstarter projects you’ll see that many of them have a lot of pre-production and development material all ready to hand that are cut into a comprehensive pitch as to what you will be getting – sometimes they have scenes shot as examples. As these things progress more material is divulged.

    The thing is you’re getting fucked anyway with the system we all ready have. The normal way is you pay more than once for the same thing: you pay to see it at the cinema but can’t own it, then you pay for it again on rental or blu-ray. At least with Kickstarter, in a single one-off payment, they get a t-shirt and a copy of the film via either download or DVD/blu-ray and they get to support something they want that otherwise would never be made in the usual corporate system. I’d say that\’s fairer than our so called ‘traditional’ market model you seem to be trumping as some kind of ideal. There are pit-falls to all market models but this one at least has some guarantee that you\’ll only have to put-out once to see the film if you like it, and WBs probably won’t get that much profit out of it anyway since those who are paying for it now won’t be paying again.

  • mars attacks

    this whole article is looking at things the wrong way. I’ve been downloading torrents since i was a wee lad. i have all of the series on hard drive and i havent paid a thing! Now i’m willing to pay $10 bucks to get one more epsiode ( a movie if you will) it will be fun to see what the characters are like after 10 years. I dont care if warner market it, the movie is getting made. I’ll get to see regardless. if it gathers new fans who rush out to by dvd sets, well good for them and goof for warner.

    I’m not expecting a glut of these to do well. it has a very specific fanbase, gathered enough viewers , was on air for 3 seasons and had dvds to spread the word and sufficient time has passed. Plus it has sizable international viewers who for the most part torrented it and willing to help stump up cash ( if they can get a international reward come on! digital downloads should be without boundaries.) Once that international option comes along, expect an uptick in numbers again

    I love journeyman, however i know its time has come and gone. it didn’t gather enough support on its initial run ( as nbc cant market anything) and it hasn’t even been released on dvd. I’m not expecting this ( like serenity box office) to set the world alight. I can however be happy that one new ep has been funded. ( and i am!)

    • John

      Why do you think these shows get cancelled in the first place? I’ll tell you one reason: because of people like you who download torrents.

      Perhaps you might try paying once in a while and support the good movies and television shows.

  • Agent777

    If I could Kickstart a new season/movie for Deadwood or Twin Peaks I would in a heartbeat. Good for Veronica Mars fans.

  • http://collider.com Matt Goldberg

    I think you mean the Falcons.

    • Alan B

      Thanks for the comment, Matt. Insightful, as always …

  • Steve ‘Frosty’ Weintraub

    just to be clear…I AM THE ONE deleting comments that cross the line. if you have any issues with the comment system, email me. I only delete comments that add nothing to the conversation. calling someone an asshole for writing their opinion….that crosses the line. Same with a comment about their religion. etc.

    • Alan B

      Thanks for the update, Frost. Riveting as always …

  • Nate H

    I TOTALLY agree (people who just trash Goldberg instead of listening to the argument are missing something). It’s fine that Rob Thomas wants to start up the movie, but he doesn’t own the rights – WARNER BROS DOES. So this major studio needs to get fans to pay for this film? A studio that, for example, had the money to spend $200 million on the Hobbit (part 1 of 3)??? That’s pretty bogus. That’s like Bill Gates saying “I’m going to make a new version of Windows, but only if PC users donate $2 million to get me started.” That would be RIDICULOUS. Sure, you would be free to pay for the development of it and then you could pay again to buy it, but the principal of it is all wrong. So I have to say I agree with the article. I love Star Wars, but I’m not going to pay Disney to make Episode VII and then pay again to watch it. No thanks.

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  • Irastev

    Now that studios know that a movie with a devoted fan base can raise 5-6M they will start testing how deep into the fans’ pockets they can reach. ‘You want that Firefly movie you crazy kidz? Easy. Kickstart us 18M and you’ll get your movie!”

    • Jenn

      That’s what I’ve been saying this whole time. And now rumors are pouring in about other cult franchises considering this tactic. Every property you love is going to end up being held hostage by Hollywood.

  • Irastev

    Now that studios know that a movie with a devoted fan base can raise 5-6M they will start testing how deep into the fans\’ pockets they can reach. \’You want that Firefly movie you crazy kidz? Easy. Kickstart us 18M and you\’ll get your movie!\"

  • Duder NME

    This fiasco sounds like an expensive petition.

  • Radiationman

    I think the biggest problem is that this is setting up the fans to fork out money from their pocket to fund projects, and then see no return on the investments…futher deepening the pockets of fat hollywood companies.

    If they can do it with this, why not the next batman movie?? Why not get the fans to pay for every movie from now on? Come on, if the fans really want the movie, they’ll pay for it…

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  • Mike337

    Matt, even though you are a complete tool, I kind of agree with you here.

  • crackerdogsam

    If this sort of thing makes you weep, Matt, then consider not posting the initial article about the Kickstarter campaign. I only found out about it and funded it because of Collider’s link to it.

    While you’re at it, why not stop submitting news updates on other disliked properties and superheroes and directors who are not doing things the way you’d like? It could be all “Cloud Atlas” all the time! Oh, right, then you wouldn’t get traffic, and ads, and money.

    In this Kickstarter case, you got your traffic and your money at the same time you criticize people for how to spend theirs.

    Check and mate.

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  • CassandraT

    I agree that whether this is a con or a true revolution in how films get made all depends on if the fans who paid money into the project get what they were promised in terms of the digital download of the movie or dvds or whatever but why just assume they won’t? Things do change and it seems possible at least that this might be a big one.

  • PhredofMars

    This reminds me of BtVs. If Joss Whedon had just let that die after the horrible movie because it had it’s shot and “deserved” to die then the tv show would never have been made. This is just a new tool for creators to fight to bring stories they love to life. As long as they keep their promises about the ‘”gifts” they are going to give donators for their contributions then nobody is having to pay twice for anything. Don’t be a dinosaur and refuse to change with the times. Also, let go of the Kevin Smith rage. He got the movie made he wanted and his fans really really seemed to like it and yes, that has changed the game for a lot of people.

  • PhredofMars

    Its not it’s, dammit. That one always gets me.

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