The crowdsourcing site Kickstarter has been used to raise money for everything from building an iPhone dock to the most expensive bowl of potato salad ever - that one raised some eyebrows - and more than $55,000.
Recently, actor David Cross, of Arrested Development and Mr. Show fame, took to the site to help distribute an indie film he made called "Hits."
Cross asked for $100,000 on Kickstarter, to bring his film to about twenty different cities across the US, where fans could see the film on the big screen - and pay whatever they wanted. The money raised would cover the cost of renting a theater, staffing it, and marketing the pay-what-you-want screening in each of those cities.
The funds would also go toward bringing "Hits" to fans via BitTorrent - the peer-to-peer file sharing service. There, folks can download the film for whatever amount they choose to pay.
Cross says he got the idea to put the film out this way after he went to Sundance. "Hits" was well-received there, but "the plans that the distributors had for us were pretty lackluster and very typical for an indie film - show it in New York for a week, LA for a week...and then Apple Itunes and DVD in about three months. And that's fine, but it doesn't get the movie out to the fans," Cross said in his Kickstarter pitch - fans of comic actors like Michael Sera, Matt Walsh and Amy Sedaris - all of whom appear in the film.
Well, the pitch worked. Cross raised over $100,000.
"Hits" screened in theaters across the country on February 12th, and fans paid as much as they saw fit to view it. And starting February 13th, fans can snag the movie on BitTorrent too.
"Hits" is a dark comedy about a guy in upstate New York named Dave Stuben, played by Walsh. Stuben becomes the bane of his local city council due to his long-winded rants at public meetings. But, at its core, the film is really about the nature of fame in the age of social media.
Watch the trailer:
David Cross spoke with Take Two host Alex Cohen about what inspired him to write this particular story for his directorial debut.
If you'd like to see the film on the big screen, you can also see "Hits" in select theaters across the US - for regular ticket price - beginning February 13. Click here for locations and showtimes.