The fine folks at Zombie Orpheus Entertainment dropped me a line about the forthcoming JourneyQuest season and their efforts to crowd source this project. They have turned to Kickstarter and have already reached their initial goal of $60,000, thus ensuring that Jen Page will create and model a barbarian queen fur bikini in a special, backers only photo shoot. Did I mention we’ve covered JourneyQuest and Jen Page before? And that these are the same folks who brought us Gamers: Dorkness Rising? These folks understand the RPG hobby, understand film making and really have a way to deliver a fun, highly watchable product which pokes fun at the hobby without malice.
JourneyQuest is a grand fantasy adventure in the style of Terry Pratchett and Robert Asprin – tons of humor, great visuals and Creative Commons licensed to boot. It’s well worth watching, in fact you can catch Episode 1 from Season 1 right after the break, so you don’t even have to wander off the page to check it out! If you enjoy the first season (and I’m betting you will) I’d highly encourage you to cough up at least a buck to keep this show going! If everyone who watched it paid $1, ZOE would be able to produce the entire show through to its conclusion.
JourneyQuest – Season 1, Episode 1
Every backer, from the $1 level to the $10,000 gets an incentive, which range from access to behind the scenes content (at a buck) through personal delivery of the one of a kind artwork commissioned for the second season and a private screening.
I’ve put my money where my mouth is and backed this project. I’d highly encourage you to do the same if you like CC licensed, independent projects and enjoyed this show!
Here’s the official press release
Seattle, Washington 10/17/11 After debuting in 2010 as one of the most viewed web series of all time, JourneyQuest Season One’s cliff-hanger ended with Carrow moderately dead and rotting, Glorion wandering aimlessly through the catacombs, and Perf, Nara and what is left of Carrow captured by a mysterious Assassin. It is hardly surprising fans are clamoring for a Season Two, which will include Fran Kranz, who played Topher Brink on Joss Whedon’s Dollhouse, and Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) superstar Bob “The Beast” Sapp.
After just 11 days JourneyQuest season two reached its initial goal. This was due, in large part, to the project’s core fan base, and early KickStarter contributors. In that time it was featured in numerous places on the KickStarter site: number one on New and Noteworthy in Seattle, number three on Popular This Week, and as a Popular Film/Video. The latter two sections acknowledge high-profile campaigns regardless of region. Upon achieving the initial funding goal of $60,000, the seven episode second season is now ready to go into production. However, with 39 days left on the campaign, the production team is hopeful to reach other goals as funding continues to increase. If the KickStarter can reach $100,000 in contributions, season two will become a 10 episode season. Anything over $100,000 will be set aside for starting season three. If funds reach $200,000, which is not unprecedented on KickStarter, the cast and crew will be able to shoot seasons two and three concurrently.
JourneyQuest, co-produced by Zombie Orpheus Entertainment (ZOE) and Dead Gentlemen Productions (DGP), decided to use the KickStarter.com fundraising platform as part of its revolutionary business model: No Studio – No Network – No Cancellation. “The key to our fan-supported and creator-distributed [business] model is that we can’t be canceled by some studio guy in a suit,” said writer/director Matt Vancil. “If our fans are interested in what comes next, then we rely on them to make that happen. Using KickStarter is a great way to streamline that process.” The two month campaign was launched on September 27th and will conclude on Nov. 26th.
“Season One was, in industry terms, a pilot,” said executive producer Ben Dobyns. “We shot it on our own terms, with minimal investment, just to show what we could do, and it was largely an act of faith. Season Two’s fundraising effort is going to be a test of sorts to see if our self-sustaining, fan-supported model will continue to work for future productions.”
The now-reached goal of $60k was “… the bare minimum,” said Matt. “That’s important. If we get more money than what we’re asking for, we could do a bigger second season, or even shoot seasons two and three back-to-back. With fans as enthusiastic and supportive as ours, there’s really no limit on what we can do.” Following KickStarter’s terms, if the fundraising goal is not met, all funds are returned to the contributors.
Every contributor, from the base level of $1 to the maximum contribution of $10,000, will receive some form of incentive. These include items such as being acknowledged on the website, listed in the film’s credits, custom-made wizard hats, prints of an exclusive poster created by renowned fantasy artist Wayne Reynolds, walk-on roles, or various producer credits.
The KickStarter video, which includes appearance an appearance from Bob Sapp, as well as performers and members of the production team, makes a simple point: If everyone who has already enjoyed JourneyQuest contributed just one dollar every year, ZOE and DGP could easily produce new seasons indefinitely. And they certainly hope to do that and more, as there are a number of projects ready to shoot, including more titles in The Gamers series, a Demon Hunters re-boot, and several sci-fi series.
Visit the KickStarter: http://www.kickstarter.com/
Watch Journey Quest: www.hulu.com/
Production Stills: www.journey-quest.com/
JourneyQuest is the first collaboration between Zombie Orpheus Entertainment and Dead Gentlemen Productions. The brain child of Matt Vancil, the creator of The Gamers and Demon Hunters, JourneyQuest explores the traditions and tropes of fantasy with a self-aware twist. Filmed and released in 2010, the official DVD of Season 1 was released in 2011.
Zombie Orpheus Entertainment is a Seattle-based new media company dedicated to creating original work, as well as supporting and distributing the work of others. JourneyQuest is ZOE’s first major project, released via web in 2010, and on DVD in 2011. Visit zombieorpheus.com for more information, a number of video series, weekly update videos, con coverage, and a bustling fan community.
Dead Gentlemen Productions started as an improvisation performance troop at a small Tacoma University. After the success of student and independent film projects, DGP released The Gamers: Dorkness Rising in 2008, which has become an international success. Dorkness was recently released in a new special edition “digitally re-dungeon-mastered” DVD.