Warner Bros. Greenlights VERONICA MARS, Will Be Produced Only with Kickstarter Funds

by     Posted 1 year, 41 days ago

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The story around Veronica Mars series creator Rob Thomas and star Kristen Bell’s Kickstarter campaign continues to evolve.  Yesterday morning we reported that the duo had launched the fundraising effort to raise $2 million in order for Warner Bros., the rights-holding studio, to give the okay on a feature version of the sleuth series.  They raised the funds in 10 hours and continue to bring in more pledges even now.  Though the campaign reached its goal, it wasn’t clear whether or now Warner Bros. had greenlit the project or just how they would be involved if and when they did.  Hit the jump to see the latest on the Veronica Mars movie.

The Wrap is reporting veronica_mars_kristen_bellthat a studio insider claims that Warner Bros. has indeed given the green light to the Veronica Mars movie after fans successfully demonstrated their interest in getting the film off the ground.  According to the report:

“The film’s production budget will come entirely from the money it raised on Kickstarter and won’t include any additional funding from the studio, the individual told TheWrap. Warner Bros. Digital Distribution will shoulder the cost of distributing the film and marketing it to the “Veronica Mars” faithful.”

Pledges are not exactly equivalent to cold hard cash, but since Kickstarter boasts a 98%  success rate in receiving funds, this shouldn’t be an issue, especially considering how eager the fanbase is.  What’s more concerning is just how the production team plans to produce a feature length Veronica Mars movie and make good on all of their promised swag (as broken down in a cost analysis here) in addition to abiding by union agreements, unless this really will be an indie production shepherded by Warner somehow.  And all with a planned theatrical and digitally distributed release in 2014?

While this is certainly a win for fans, it’s almost guaranteed to be a bigger win for the studio.  Our own Matt Goldberg recently laid out why that might not be a good thing going forward.  We expect to see much more on this story in the days ahead as it plays out, especially once we hear official word from the studio.

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  • Strong Enough

    This whole thing is a mess for the film industry.

    • MCP

      Definitely agree….

  • Grayden

    So, everyone is basically working for free? I would assume this means the more money is raised, the better the movie will be? Better sets, better crew, better everything. What a joke. I never got into Veronica Mars, so I’ll take the cult following at face value and not short the fans on their devotion, but this is just a sad, sad thing for a studio to do. They’re basically saying, “You all want a VM movie? Ok, YOU pay for it.” Just leave this series to rest in the past with all the great shows that ended too soon.

    • INSTANT JUSTICE

      Well they’d be paying for it more than once anyway through cinema-tickets and blu-rays, at least this way the only pay once, get a t-shirt, a script and a digital download of the film.

  • nintendo zapper

    so does this mean that warner bros will collect only recoup the distro funds or are they gonna want some of that kickstarter profit too if this movie is successful?

    • Dave Trumbore

      This is one of many big questions. I’m sure the legal departments are having a field day right now.

    • Matt

      There is probably some sort of percentage worked that they will get of the profits after they get back distribution and marketing costs. So much will probably go to the studio and then the rest will go to the cast and crew to be split based on any sort of back end deals they have.

  • Keegan

    Can’t wait to see this absolute fucking tornado of an event turns out legally, financially and the actual quality of the movie. bold, i guess.

  • Frantic

    I have no idea why anyone gives a shit about the logistics of making the film, who gets what financially, or the legal backdrop to the whole kickstarter arrangement.

    I wanted an instalment to the Veronica Mars property, I paid some money, I’m getting a Veronica Mars movie.

    I don’t care if Warner Bros takes the kickstarter money as long as I get a Veronica Mars movie.

    Why the hell is everyone over-analysing it?

    • Matt

      Hey man. I’m with you.

    • Nick

      People give a shit… because for anyone who has a career in the entertainment industry, this is a big deal. Essentially, a studio is allowing the fans to pay for the movie and will reap all the benefits (if any)… You as a fan get the movie… but if studios decide to stop spending as much money but think they’ll make money none the less… who knows what will happen? The people who have jobs in the industry care because it looks like a case of the rich getting richer without having to do anything… except for distribute it…. which is a pittance to a huge studio like Warner Bros.

      • Dave Trumbore

        Being informed isn’t just important for people in the entertainment industry, but anyone who contributes money to it…ie, everyone. Fans who contribute to a campaign like this should, at the very least, know where their money is actually going regardless of how enthusiastic they are about handing it over. This fundraising model also has implications beyond Veronica Mars as it’s already being considered for other properties going forward.

  • Frantic

    Fucking double post. Sorry.

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