Tag Archives: Kickstarter

A Television Series Set At The Renfest!!!

How about a television series made by some very talented people set in the context of a Renaissance Festival?

That, lords and ladies, is the plan.

Screen Shot 2016-05-07 at 12.54.38 PMRenfest is a serial set in a RenFest, filmed at an actual Renfest, that combines the themes of “office politics,” a sort of anachronistic Big-Bang Theory, produced, written, stared in, and developed, by an outstandingly talented team including Shawn Otto (a Renaissance man himself, whom readers of this blog know well), Mary Jo Pehl, Jamal Farah, Dave Allen, and Trace Beaulieu.

The trailer demonstrates that this is an excellent project, and the plot layout of the first season makes me want to binge watch it as soon as possible.

Unfortunately, the show does not exist yet. The creative team has decided to get this off the ground with a very ambitious but I think quite doable Kickstarter. The idea is to develop the project to the extent that it will be impossible to avoid it either getting picked up by a major distributor, or to become an excellent web based project. Personally, I’d love to see it be a Netflix Original or something along those lines, as the quality of the material is top notched.

Screen Shot 2016-05-07 at 12.52.35 PM

Politics and battles of profound import and little consequence ensue. RenFest is a thoroughly entertaining workplace satire that will have you snorting your turkey leg as it skewers today’s complex social issues ripped from the headlines and writ ridiculously small. Sample future episodes listed below.

The show features the comic antics of Elisabeth (Mary Jo Pehl: MST3K, Cinematic Titanic) and her Somali-American assistant, A.K. (introducing Jamal Farah), as they tangle with festival general manager and despot Lloyd Gunderson (Dave “Gruber” Allen: Freaks & Geeks, Ned’s Declassified, Bad Teacher), the woefully inaccurate Viking (Trace Beaulieu: MST3K, Freaks & Geeks, Other Space) and other festival denizens. Think “The Office” or “Parks and Recreation” set amid the vibrant world of Renaissance festivals.

Screen Shot 2016-05-07 at 1.03.16 PMWe shot a trailer and an incredibly funny mini-pilot in the fall of 2015. It’s written by Shawn Otto, who wrote House of Sand and Fog and developed a TV show with the legendary Joel Surnow (co-creator of 24). Award-winning veteran commercial director Joe Schaak helms the series with world-class cinematographer Jeff Stonehouse crafting the imagery. Paul Sadeghi oversees postproduction at Pixel Farm and we have a built-in cast of thousands.

The Kickstarter page for the project is here, rich in information and including a teaser video, and down the page a bit, a trailer.

Please click through and have a look, and give them money.

Kickstarter “We were wrong” about reddit rape book project

Kickstarter has said this, about this:

Dear everybody,

On Wednesday morning Kickstarter was sent a blog post quoting disturbing material found on Reddit. The offensive material was part of a draft for a “seduction guide” that someone was using Kickstarter to publish. The posts offended a lot of people — us included — and many asked us to cancel the creator’s project. We didn’t.

We were wrong.

Why didn’t we cancel the project when this material was brought to our attention? Two things influenced our decision:

  • The decision had to be made immediately. We had only two hours from when we found out about the material to when the project was ending. We’ve never acted to remove a project that quickly.
  • Our processes, and everyday thinking, bias heavily toward creators. This is deeply ingrained. We feel a duty to our community — and our creators especially — to approach these investigations methodically as there is no margin for error in canceling a project. This thinking made us miss the forest for the trees.
  • These factors don’t excuse our decision but we hope they add clarity to how we arrived at it.

    Let us be 100% clear: Content promoting or glorifying violence against women or anyone else has always been prohibited from Kickstarter. If a project page contains hateful or abusive material we don’t approve it in the first place. If we had seen this material when the project was submitted to Kickstarter (we didn’t), it never would have been approved. Kickstarter is committed to a culture of respect.

    Where does this leave us?

    First, there is no taking back money from the project or canceling funding after the fact. When the project was funded the backers’ money went directly from them to the creator. We missed the window.

    Second, the project page has been removed from Kickstarter. The project has no place on our site. For transparency’s sake, a record of the page is cached here.

    Third, we are prohibiting “seduction guides,” or anything similar, effective immediately. This material encourages misogynistic behavior and is inconsistent with our mission of funding creative works. These things do not belong on Kickstarter.

    Fourth, today Kickstarter will donate $25,000 to an anti-sexual violence organization called RAINN. It’s an excellent organization that combats exactly the sort of problems our inaction may have encouraged.

    We take our role as Kickstarter’s stewards very seriously. Kickstarter is one of the friendliest, most supportive places on the web and we’re committed to keeping it that way. We’re sorry for getting this so wrong.

    Thank you,


    One can argue (endlessly, cuz INTERNET) as to weather or not 4 hours was enough time, or how the money should be handled, etc. etc. but none of that matters. The point is, Kicksarter does not have and had not earned a reputation for being a cesspool like Reddit is, they got thrown a curve ball, they fixed it. Good for them. Kickstarter is good.

    Regarding the money getting through to the project, that is clearly irrelevant. Bad people gave some bad person some money to do something bad. We’ll see how that goes. It will be funny when it does not go as planned.

    Anyway, good job Kickstarter and good job Internet for acting responsibly.

    Photo Credit: sizeofguam via Compfight cc

    Kickstarter’s Guide to Reddit Style Rape.

    Humanity truly sucks and I can prove it. One word: Reddit.


    OK, you may want some background.

    A Reddit Regular, perhaps a Reddit celeb (or at least he is now) wants to write a book on how guys seduce women, and he’s asking for money on Kickstarter. One of his tips is this: You move in close, pull out your penis, take the woman’s hand and …. whatever.

    I find it interesting that many commenters are referring to that as inappropriate, or sexual assault, by way of objecting to it. I’m pretty sure, though, that it is rape. Probably depends on the state. In any event, now that I’ve revealed one of Ken Hoinsky’s helpful tips for how to get women to like you, I’ll quickly add just in case you didn’t know: Guys, don’t do that. Just. Don’t. Do. That. Don’t.

    The book rape-apologist and redditor Ken Hoinsky intends to “write” is mostly going to consist of previously written garbage he’ll steal from the Reddit “Seduction” community. Clearly, Hoinsky is a loser of the lowest level if that’s all he’s go. Ctrl-c, Ctrl-v, give me money.

    Here’s a question that is being asked: Why does Kickstarter allow projects that are basically rape handbooks? And why should anybody ever even visit the Kickstarter site, or give any money to any project of any kind, or take any of your projects to Kickstarter, as long as they Kickstarter is run by boneheaded idiots who think this monstrous project is OK?

    Here’s a petition you can sign to tell the Kickstarter CEO to do the right thing.

    Here’s the story in more detail.