Spike Lee begins fundraiser on Kickstarter for new film

Charles Sykes/Invision/Associated Press

Spike Lee has launched a Kickstarter campaign to help fund his next feature film.

By JAKE COYLE
AP Entertainment Writer

NEW YORK – The next Spike Lee joint will be a Kickstarter production.

Following in the footsteps of “Veronica Mars” and Zach Braff, Lee has launched an online campaign to help fund his next feature film. The Brooklyn filmmaker Monday unveiled his bid to raise $1.25 million during the next month using the fundraising site Kickstarter.

Lee offered few details on the film, but said it would be about “the addiction of blood.”

The 56-year-old director said he was inspired to crowd-source the film after hearing from a student of his that the “Veronica Mars” movie raised $5.7 million on Kickstarter, and Braff’s film pulled in $3.1 million. Said Lee in a video posted on his Kickstarter page: “When I heard about that, I said, ‘Oh, snap!”’

Though filmmakers including David Fincher have been involved with Kickstarter projects, Lee, the director of “Do the Right Thing” and “Malcolm X” is easily the most established filmmaker yet to use the service to raise money for a feature. His remake of the 2003 South Korean thriller “Oldboy” is to be released in October.

Kickstarter, which takes a percentage of donations, has found supporters enamored by the ability to circumvent the usual means of film production, and critics who call it digital panhandling and lament that backers, unlike typical film investors, get no cut of any eventual grosses.

In a video message, Lee said the current climate is difficult for an independent filmmakers and the only way to ensure your vision gets on screen “is when you bring the money to the table.”

“Super Heroes, Comic Books, 3-D Special EFX, Blowing up the Planet Nine Times and Fly through the Air while Transforming is not my Thang,” wrote Lee. “To me it’s not just that these Films are being made but it seems like these are the only films getting made.”

Contribution levels range up to $10,000, which earns a trip with Lee to a New York Knicks game in his courtside seats.

“Do you wish to see Human Beings dealing with each other on a Human Level?” implored Lee. “How many more explosions with Ear splitting Sound Effects can you take? C’mon People, please get behind this Joint.”

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