Let me just preface this little post by saying: I love you, Kristen Bell. I really, really think you are so fantastic. And it's true, I do. I loved Veronica Mars. I'm addicted to House of Lies. I made my boyfriend watch that sloth video while daring him to deny how freaking adorable you are (he couldn't do it, btw). I would say that you are one of my favorite actresses. You seem so funny and down to earth and just delightful. I even booed my own TV the other day when I saw you get cut on Burning Love and then I tweeted you, which if you look at my feed, I rarely tweet celebs. Which is why I feel sucky about having this beef.
So recently I heard Rob Thomas (not the better-in-his-solo-career-than-that-band-and-married-that-hot-model Rob but the Veronica Mars producer Rob) had put together a campaign on Kickstarter to raise money for a Veronica Mars movie. In his description, he talks about his love for VM and how this film has been a dream for a long time and that he really wants it to come true. He also says that this is their shot, adding:
Kristen and I met with the Warner Bros. brass, and they agreed to allow us to take this shot. They were extremely cool about it, as a matter of fact. Their reaction was, if you can show there's enough fan interest to warrant a movie, we're on board.
Now as you probably already know, within mere hours Rob met his original 30 day $2 million dollar goal. At the time this post was written, they're at $3,717,575. The whole thing went viral. It was everywhere, on Huff Post, on Entertainment Weekly, blogs, twitter, even my mom heard about it. (Her name is Veronica Mars?! That's a strange last name. Is she French? She must be French.)
People were begging the public to make this happen. And the public listened. For me, it was both awe-inspiring and unsettling at the same time. And here's why:
For one, I think that this whole campaign is sort of the very antithesis of what Kickstarter is about. Correct me if I'm wrong (Okay, you're wrong. - my mom) but I've always seen Kickstarter as a place for artists without industry support to go to make their dreams come true. Rob even mentions his own friend's story about how he was able to use Kickstarter to fund an album.
I guess in my view, Kickstarter is for people like this guy, Jon Cozart, who I just stumbled across yesterday when I saw this video about what happens to Disney Princesses in the end (it's brilliant by the way). He has no studio, no agent, no publicist, no nationally syndicated producer/writer credits, no daily features in U.S. Weekly but he does have an insane amount of talent and a following. And through Kickstarter he could do some incredible things, like fund a web series (please do this) or put out an album (please do this).
Now I did a little research (Don't lie in writing, Ashbey. - my lawyer uncle) and it turns out that, according to Celebrity Net Worth, Kristen is worth $8 million dollars. And based on Rob's IMDB credits, reliable industry sources that I spoke to guesstimate that he's worth quite a bit of moolah himself (he's been credited as a writer on 83 episodes of 90210 alone). Now I mention this because of two reasons.
Number one because of the "Mel Gibson Effect." Now before you get all "For real, girl?!" on me, let me say that Mel was worth nearly a billion dollars and here's why. He not only wrote and directed Passion of the Christ, he funded that thing. And according to the web, it could have ruined him. Now clearly, I'm not saying Kristen and Rob have to fund VM themselves but they're already in a better place than Mel without even counting the Kickstarter fund: Because they have a distributor -- and not just a little indie studio -- Warner Bros.
In fact, do you even need $2 million to make VM? Right now at SXSW, there are a ton of movies being premiered that were made with the budgets of not millions but thousands, thousands. I hear Joe Swanberg's movie Drinking Buddies was made on free beer (no, it wasn't) and it is receiving so much applause (yes, it is). And these films are amazing. They're made with love and heart and community support, much like what Veronica Mars already has.
The second reason is really my beef with all of you. I always have at least one friend who is trying to raise money for causes, real causes, like stopping-the-dying-of-children-from-cancer type causes and when they ask for money you can just hear the crickets. So what does this say of us? Why are we as a society willing to drop our credit cards to fund a movie that could be funded by the very well-known, very well-connected people who are asking for the money instead of throwing money at our cause worthy friends (like this girl) or better yet directly to the organizations that are funding the arduous effort to find cures? So while I'm very impressed by all of this hoopla, I'm also kind of sad about it too.
I mean, can you imagine what would happen if Ryan Gosling said "Hey girl, if we can get raise $2 million dollars for the American Cancer Society, I'll make The Notebook 2." That sh*t would get made, trust.
So here's my little proposal and you can all let it go in one ear and out the other (I already did. - you), and it's really to Kristen and Rob. Rob, if you put together this campaign to show the love for Veronica Mars, you did it dude. We love VM. The love is there! Warner Bros is impressed; your movie will get made and I will go see it with everyone else (seriously, I will unless you ban me for writing this). But do us all a solid. Give a chunk of it back. Give it to some place good, some place that really needs it where it will make a difference. Or match it. I'm no financial wizard but I think you and Kristen can probably handle donating a really nice chunk and fund part of this film yourselves. Kristen can hit up Dax, the internet says he has $10 million large (yes, I feel weird that I know this). And I'm sure Mel will tell you (from his hot tub) that you'll totally make that money back. Consider it an investment in yourselves and your dream.
So just think about it. I'll still have a girl crush on you Kristen, no matter what you do. But think about what you need and what you can give. That's all I ask.