The Reel’s Indie Funding Guide to help producers

As a champion of local independent filmmaking, ReelChicago is giving its its indie audience an extra boost with the Reel’s Indie Funding Guide: a list of area filmmakers seeking crowdfunding support to ignite their projects or to complete them.

“Crowd funding is a very good thing,” says Tim Horsburgh, Kartemquin Films’ director of communication and distribution. “It’s as much about having people involved in the process of filmmaking as it is funding for the project.

“We think it’s a great way to access funding that involves and builds a community. You are establishing relationships with people who will be long-term supporters, by giving them unique access to the film or filmmakers that they ordinarily would not have had.”

One of the 10 films on the Reel’s inaugural guide is Kartemquin’s feature-length doc, “Saving Mes Aynak,” directed by Brent Huffman, a race against time to save a 5,000-year old Buddhist archeological site in Afghanistan, whose discoveries are already rewriting Buddhist history, from imminent demolition by Chinese state-owned copper mining company. 

Kartemquin is using Indiegogo and VHX Unite, a streaming website, to raise %50,000 — not for the film’s production (completed last year) but to mount a global awareness and activism campaign.

So far, the campaign has raised 23% of its goal, as it heads towards a June 26 deadline. 

Money raised will be used purely for education and outreach, says Horsburgh. “We will send 10% of the money to fund the architects preserving the site and the rest will be used to add signatures to a petition to pressure the Afghan government to preserve this invaluable site.”

The Chicago premiere of “Saving Mes Aynak” will be held June 2 at the Music Box. 

On July 1, “Global@SaveMesAynakDay,” “the advocacy goal is to get people around the world to watch the film on the same day on VHX Unite,” Horsburgh says.

The main requirement for inclusion in the Reel’s Indie Funding Guide is being a Chicago area producer. We will post pitches as often as 10 or more are received.  There’s no charge for the listing.

Send your currently posted pitch to dan@reelchicago.com. Give some breathing space for your deadline.  No guarantees on responses, except that to say that your project will be in front of our 50,000 monthly readers.

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