Zach Braff takes to Kickstarter to crowd-fund new film, close to hitting $2 million target in two days


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The Independent Culture

Zach Braff’s long awaited follow up to his acclaimed film Garden State has taken its inspiration from Veronica Mars - well its crowd funding model, at least.

The creative team behind Veronica Mars raised $5.7m after appealing to fans to fund the movie on crowdsourcing site Kickstarter.

This week, Scrubs star Braff said he would follow the same route to fund his new movie Wish I Was Here, and has raised $1.7m of the targeted $2m in just two days.

Braff said: “After I saw how the amazing Veronica Mars fans rallied around that project in a mind-blowing way I couldn’t help but think, like so many others, that maybe this could be a new paradigm for filmmakers who want to make smaller personal films without having to sign away any of their artistic freedom.”

Fans who pledged money were offered everything from a weekly production diary for a $10 donation to screenings, t-shirts, premiere tickets and a personal video message from Braff himself.

Those pledging $2,500 will get to be extras in the film, while those putting up more have the chance to name a character or receive acknowledgment in the final credits. The chance to speak a line, in return for a pledge of $10,000 has already been snapped up.

Braff will direct and star in Wish I Was Here, a dramatic comedy “in the tone of Garden State”. He added: “It is not a sequel in story but a continuation of the tone.”

He said that the simplest reason to why he had not followed up Garden State before “is financing”. There are “money guys” willing to back the latest project, he said, but they insisted on casting and final cut.

He revealed that Garden State would not have been made if it was not for a sole investor from outside the entertainment industry who was a fan of Scrubs. “I’ve no idea if raising money on here is going to work,” Braff said. “But I think it’s worth a try.”

Veronic Mars was the fastest project to reach $1m, and became the highest funded film project in Kickstarter history.