Just Crowdfund the $&*# Movie!: Saying “Thank You”


Welcome to Just Crowdfund the $&*# Movie!, where indie moviemaker Jayce Bartok talks about the dos and don’ts of crowdfunding from the trenches of his own crowdfunding campaign. Have a question for Jayce about his movie, Tiny Dancer, or just crowdfunding in general? Ask away at .

Sundance and the Oscars are over, and it’s high time to get back to the business of getting our own movie, Tiny Dancer, made. We currently have $25,000 being held by our fiscal sponsor the New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA), but there’s more money to raise. Tomorrow evening (Wednesday, February 29th) we’re having a “thank you” event for our donors: An Evening of Beauty at the Benefit Cosmetics Soho Store, where anyone who has contributed to Tiny Dancer by becoming a member of The Independent Collective (our little organization for fundraising), gets a makeover, makeup and vodka. What could be better?

The event is the brainchild of Tiffany, who thought it was time to thank our amazing donors. But get this: We sent out the invite to all our donors and posted it on Facebook, and we started getting a ton of RSVPs… but none of them from donors! We don’t know who all these people are or where they’re coming from. It’s like some sort of zombie movie!

At our last big fundraiser, lots of people showed up and had a great time, laughing and crying when we screened our Tiny Dancer footage… but few of them actually donated. Never again. I mean, NYC is a town teeming with people looking for free vodka. Someone has to say: “No. This vodka is only for people who have donated to our film!”

We promptly clarified that the event is only for members of The Independent Collective and requires a minimum donation of at least $20 to attend. Radio silence. In fact, we received even more RSVPs from complete strangers. But our clarification also had the opposite effect of what we intended: Many of our lovely donors donated again, thinking we were looking for more money when all we want to do is thank them! Arrrrrrgh!

I am determined to stand out in front of the event on Wednesday night, armed with a clipboard and one of those iPhone credit card reader apps, doing my best snippy bouncer routine. In fact, we aren’t even really able to accept money at the party, but no one is getting in without it. Letting people in who haven’t supported Tiny Dancer would just be a disservice to all those who did donate.

At the party, Tiffany and I will start spreading the word about straight shares, which we’re going to start offering as a way to raise more money. I’ll write about those in the coming weeks. We are finally going to crack that business plan!

If you’re in New York tomorrow, Wednesday 29th, come down to the party at 454 West Broadway in SoHo. It starts at 7pm… just bring $20 if you aren’t already a member!

Jayce Bartok is an actor/producer/writer/director who runs Vinyl Foote Productions from Brooklyn with his wife Tiffany. He wrote, co-produced and starred in The Cake Eaters and can currently be seen in USA’s “White Collar” and in the upcoming feature films Predisposed, opposite Melissa Leo, and Price Check, both of which premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival. To stay updated on his Tiny Dancer progress, follow @JayceBartok and @TICNYC on Twitter.

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