A "Veronica Mars" film is ready for take off after fans pitched in more than $2 million Wednesday to make the movie a reality.
Series creator Rob Thomas launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund a film about the CW cult hit that ended its three-season run in 2007. Less than 24 hours later, nearly 32,000 supporters had contributed to the crowdfunding site to meet the requested $2 million minimum.
Kristen Bell, the actress who played the titular young sleuth, wrote a Kickstarter plea to get fans to open their wallets: "I am currently the happiest blonde in a hamster ball the world has ever seen. We have been waiting so long to make this movie dream a movie reality, and it's because of your commitment, your persistence, that we finally have a chance...If we hit our goal, we will make the sleuthiest, snarkiest, it's-all-fun-and-games-til-one-of-you-gets-my-foot-up-your-a-- movie we possibly can."
The grassroots approach worked in record time on Kickstarter, a funding platform for creative projects from music and movies to food and fashion. Production on the "Mars" film is expected to start this summer for an early 2014 release.
Kickstarter gives projects a month to hit their fundraising goal, so the final tally could be much more than $2 million in the end. To get fans to contribute, various enticements are being offered. Higher monetary pledges can buy you a spot as a featured extra in the film, or Ma Bell herself will record an outgoing voicemail for you. Lower pledges come with perks like T-shirts and posters. If you kick in $400, for example, Bell (@IMKristenBell) and Thomas (@RobThomas) will follow you on Twitter for a year.
The top-tier pledge, priced at $10,000, gets a short speaking role in the flick. Interested? Too late. Only one was up for grabs and it's gone, but I'm sure they'd still be happy to take your 10 G if you want to contribute.
Since Kickstarter's launch in 2009, over $500 million has been pledged by more than 3 million people. That's been used to fund more than 37,000 creative projects, according to the New York-based company, which must turn a tidy profit by collecting 5 percent of what's raised. Most Kickstarter-funded projects raise less than $10,000, with music and film/video having the most success of reaching their goal. At this year's Oscars, a Kickstarter-funded film called "Inocente" was the first to win an Academy Award (Best Documentary, Short Subject).