by Lucy Leitner
Recently the site of the fantastic and hopefully recurring Rock All Night Tour, Lawrenceville will play host this Saturday to events from a different batch of its most creative residents.
Between the openings of House of the Dead at 11 AM and Frown Crown at 7 PM, the venerable 720 Records will host a fundraising party for the indiegogo campaign to benefit Brian Holton’s short film Ahab from 2–6 PM. To create the gritty, modern reimagining of Moby Dick, Holton managed to condense Herman Melville’s epic into an action-packed 50-minute movie that never ventures into the sea. Holton’s plans to promote the film are just as ambitious as the movie itself. That’s where the indiegogo campaign comes in.
Clips from Ahab, exclusive for Hollyburgh
Holton acknowledges that raising money for a film that has already been shot is rather unusual, and plans to use the financial support to take Ahab to such prestigious film festivals as Sundance. Funds generated from the campaign will cover entry fees, travel, elements of post-production, and promotional materials, such as DVDs and movie posters.
Aside from getting in on the ground floor of Pittsburgh’s burgeoning, vibrant film community, donors can receive Ahab swag (DVDs, tee-shirts, posters, buttons, and stickers), passes to the October 12 local premiere, and even a $200 gift certificate to The Drawing Room Tattoo Parlor and Gallery, which Holton owns. The campaign has currently earned $1,000 of its $5,000 goal, and Saturday’s event will provide the push for the final month that often sees the most donations.
Some of the movie’s biggest backers are also members of film communities—either here in Pittsburgh or in Kansas City, MO, Holton’s hometown.
“Usually you think most of your backers are friends and family,” Holton said. “It’s kind of cool when you get strangers backing you because then it’s just based on the merit of the project.”
Indiegogo campaigns grant all earned funds to the artists whether they meet their goals or not. However, each dollar pledged helps take the film to more places. Holton will only enter Ahab at Sundance is the film is completely finished, but will attend the festival to promote the film no matter what. Holton also has not ruled out shooting additional scenes to stretch the film into a feature-length presentation. The current state and future evolution of the film will be amongst topics discussed at Saturday’s event.
Between deejay sets by Obvious Modern Music Party, Holton plans to use the event to clarify to potential supporters where their donations are going. Cast members will be present to answer questions and talk about the project in general. A raffle is also planned give supporters an immediate reward for their donations.
The afternoon event is an ideal opportunity to not only contribute to an ambitious local production, but also to understand the process of making an independent film. And, it must be said, to help Holton and the rest of the team behind Ahab capture that $5,000 white whale.
Check out the campaign: http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/122935
And, see more clips from Ahab: http://vimeo.com/ahabmovie