The fate of the long-promised Veronica Mars movie is now being placed wholly into the hands of the show’s fans. In rather exciting move, series creator Rob Thomas and star Kristen Bell have launched a Kickstarter to fund the film with a goal of $2 million. The UPN series lasted only three seasons on the air before cancellation, but the show was a cult and critical favorite. The plot followed the exploits of a high school/college student moonlighting as a private investigator and carried a heavy noir influence.
Thomas and Bell have been adamant about their desire to make a Veronica Mars movie over the years, but studios have been unwilling to foot the production bill given that their handy dandy models predict the film will have a limited audience and therefore low profitability. Now, in what could possibly be a game-changing move for the film industry, the very fans that have been clamoring for it to come to fruition will be funding the entire production. Hit the jump for more.
Per EW, the plan for the Veronica Mars movie now is to shoot it this summer on a low budget if their $2 million Kickstarter goal is met within 30 days. Warner Bros. Digital Distribution has agreed to pay for the film’s marketing, promotion, and distribution as long as Bell and Thomas fund the actual production budget. The pic would be rleased in the first quarter of 2014 with a limited theatrical run followed by a VOD, iTunes, etc. release. The only way the movie is going to happen is if the Kickstarter goal is met, and judging by how quickly that tally keeps going up (as of this post the site has been live for just under an hour and is at $55,778), the goal will almost certainly be met.
I’m late to the Veronica Mars game as it’s still on my long “to-do” list of shows that I plan on watching at some point, but I understand that it’s very good. I think this move to fund the film through Kickstarter is something that could have an enormous impact on Hollywood. Kickstarter has been an excellent tool used by indie projects to get micro-budget films and shorts made, but the big question has been whether a larger film with a serious cast and filmmaker behind it could use the site to get more edgy or risky projects off the ground that studios are averse to funding.
David Fincher and Co. launched a Kickstarter last year to fund a proof-of-concept reel for their long-in-development animated adaptation of The Goon, and that goal was met rather quickly. I don’t see why—assuming the Veronica Mars goal is met—something like an Arrested Development movie or any number of fan-favorite projects couldn’t also use Kickstarter to help bring features to fruition that thus far have been lingering in development hell. This is most certainly an exciting development, and I’m really looking forward to seeing how this affects the filmmaking industry going forward.
Click here to visit the Veronica Mars movie Kickstarter page, and watch a short made for the fund below.