Well, well, well... have a lot of explaining to do, don't we?
"An Idea about appreciating each other after straying away, an idea about breaking free. That idea is Dead ED," said a year younger me, in an embarrassing video released to Kickstarter backers, as I was figuring out how to explain what the hell happened to the, then three-years-old, now four-years-old, Kickstarter film. Now I am trying to figure out how to explain what the hell happened, once again.
Failure is what happened, ladies and gentlemen. Here is last year's video:
In the video we apologized, went through how our team split up, and how life threw us to the curb. To me watching the video is almost unbearable, and like wanting to punch my little brother in the face, repeatedly. Looking at your old self is... weird. Then we discussed the startup of this production company, Reel Nation Media. We then explained how our obligations to our backers would not change, and it still hasn't. You also got to see a short but sweet unfinished scene of the film where our heroes were turning against each other as they were trapped with little hope of escape. Next we promised to still commit to the Kickstarter rewards, finish the film, and to introduce a new lifetime rewards system which promised the backers equivalent rewards for every film in the future (this will still hold true). We then promised monthly updates... yeahhhhhhhhhhh. Didn't happen. You'll see why- but something gives me hope at the end of the video. "Dead ED shows that it's never too late to set things right. That is what this journey is about."
Nothing could be more true.
So here we are, trying to set things right.
In the year since that video, a lot has happened: We finished our first feature documentary film, Stand Up, but could not get to distribution until August 2016 because of some novice failures related to the film. We also had to shut down our office because our steady stream of income from short documentary was eliminated when Al Jazeera America decided to abort mission for good. By that time, we had started an Al Jazeera short documentary that we were commissioned for. Even though we could have dropped it we felt that our responsibilities to the subjects demanded more time, which turned into our newest film, Refuge. So we had to start spending more of what we didn't have to keep that project alive. As if things couldn't have gotten any worse, a lethal illness affected a family member, which had to result in a split of the team once again... what doesn't kill you makes you stronger, right?
This is me working with AlJazeera. I was an assistant to the famous John Ware from the BBC's Panorama. I'm going to really miss that.
No worries, everything is fine now, that person was a champion and is making it out, and we're actually doing pretty well. Stand Up is on its way to theaters while Refuge is almost done with production. Dead ED is the project that had to wait because the lack of time and resources. Hopefully it can bring this Nation back together again.
Our plan is to finish what's on our plate, including Dead ED, by March 2017, and to deliver all original Kickstarter and lifetime rewards for all projects. Then we hope to start anew. I will be making a video to explain more, but I just needed to get this out while I had 20 minutes of spare time. Thanks for your patience this whole time, guys. I feel like I could not be any more in the wrong. Hopefully you'll give me another shot!
For Dead ED Kickstarter backers, please get ahold of me at RNM@reelnationmedia.com for concerns or complaints so that I may address them with full commitment.
Expect more frequent updates.
Keep it Reel.