It’s been more that 3 months since my Kickstarter campaign. This update is long overdue and am delighted to give you a report on what’s happening on this end.
Although my Kickstarter campaign exceeded our expectation, the funds only cover a portion of the expenses to return to China for the next production phase. I’m very happy to report that one of my earlier grantors, the Long Family Foundation, saw the publicity and enthusiastic support for this project and re-pledged a generous $10,000 for the next phase! This is HUGE … and puts me much closer to my budget goal. In the last couple of weeks, I went ahead to renew my passport and contacted my China team for their availability for late summer. I also corresponded with a NGO to help me contact their China counterpart to screening stories, subjects and locations. The prep work has begun!
In the last few months Xan Aranda, an award-winning producer joined our team to add credential and expertise. I’ve also worked with a couple of excellent editors on a rough cut from my existing footage — to explore the structure of the film and see if there’s enough materials to tell the stories. This exercise really helps to clarify my concept and see emerging threads for the narrative. It also allows me to see what footage and stories I must acquire to complete a fuller and richer final product.
The result is a 24 minutes rough cut that was screened a couple of weeks ago at the Kartemquin Films Lab, an excellent resource to garner feedback from the pros. I was very nervous, but the feedback was very positive and encouraging. It was an eye opening and humbling experience to hear the wisdom and constructive critiques from award-winning filmmakers.
So — never a dull moment. In the next few months, I’ll continue to fundraise, plan for the upcoming production and seeking interested NGOs for potential partnership.
Please also check quick updates posted on my Facebook link http://www.facebook.com/pages/Rise-of-the-Phoenix/259448307453667. I promise to keep you posted on my plans to return to China.