We’ve voiced our concerns about the Veronica Mars movie kickstarter, and part of that has to do with a lack of details regarding how it will use the millions of dollars in donations the project has received. The film met its goal of $2 million in record time, and the film has currently received $3.6 million in donations with 24 days to go. Writer-director Rob Thomas assures fans that he won’t be taking their money and then going silent when the film shoots this summer. Thomas says “We were built by fans so we’ll try to do our best to keep the momentum going through that,” and THR reports that he’s “promising an open shoot with plenty of tweets and photos transmitted to the internet.” Furthermore, Thomas hopes to bring some footage to Comic-Con, and will release a documentary following the film.
Hit the jump for more on what Thomas has planned for the film based on how much money he receives.
On the Kickstarter page for the Veronica Mars movie, Thomas provides the example that the more money the film receives, the more elaborate some set pieces are going to be such as a scene that could go from a verbal confrontation to an all-out brawl. Thomas elaborated to THR about other ways the budget can be used:
“The movie is outlined but frankly, I needed to know how we were doing to figure out how to model the script and how to write it. There are very specific things that are going to be affected by what our budget is,” he says. For one, Thomas wants to be able to shoot in Southern California, where the series was originally set. That’s more expensive than, say, Vancouver or Michigan, but the palm trees are worth it.
As for whether or not Kickstarter should be used for a film that’s owned by a major studio, Thomas dances around the question by saying that his kickstarter doesn’t negatively affect any indie films, and only helps to raise the profile of the site:
“I don’t think Veronica Mars is negatively affecting people that Kickstarter was built to serve, those people who are making $30-40,000 documentaries,” Thomas defends. “I think what Veronica Mars has done is brought Kickstarter to the masses. More people are now familiar with Kickstarter and more people are browsing Kickstarter for other projects who now understand what it is and what it does than there were before we launched our campaign. I think we’re bringing more eyes to that site so I think that has to be good for indie filmmakers.”
Considering that Kickstarter proclaims on its home page that it’s been featured on NPR, CNN, the AP, Time, BBC, and Wired, it’s a bit much to say that his project “brought Kickstarter to the masses”. This wasn’t a site flying under the radar, and as I said in my editorial, putting a blockbuster next to an indie doesn’t drive people to the indie. Perhaps Kickstarter will release data at some point showing that Veronica Mars caused an uptick in donations for indie films, but I’m skeptical at this point.