A former coworker and friend of mine from Blue Sky, David LaMattina, is part of a team of filmmakers known as Copper Pot Pictures. He has asked me to help the get the documentary I AM BIG BIRD made by being a Kickstarter ambassador to the project. I AM BIG BIRD is a feature documentary about Caroll Spinney, who has been Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch since Sesame Street first aired in 1969. At 78 years old, he has no intention of stopping.
The production of I AM BIG BIRD relies on the success of a Kickstarter campaign run by Copper Pot Pictures, the company making the film. I’m not sure how familiar you are with Kickstarter, but you can read a full explanation HERE. Essentially, people pledge anywhere from $1-10,000 to support the making of I AM BIG BIRD. In return, backers get really cool rewards depending on the level of the pledge. The most basic example is that for $25, a person would get a DVD of the film–so, in essence, they’re pre-ordering it. Some of our rewards are pretty epic (things like a group video chat with Caroll, the custom film poster, an illustration that he’s done or even a private dinner with Caroll himself). The only caveat to Kickstarter is that it operates on an all-or-nothing basis. If a project sets a goal at $10,000, but makes $9,999.99 in pledges, the project receives nothing.
So… how does this concern you? Well, I want to see this film get made so badly that I agreed to recruit an additional 10 people to pledge to the film, so I’m turning to you. Your pledge can be any amount–$1 to $10,000. It doesn’t matter – I simply need 10 people.
The Kickstarter campaign launches TODAY!! CLICK HERE TO PLEDGE!! -if you have an Amazon account, you can pay through that. Your credit card will NOT be charged until the project reaches its goal. I AM BIG BIRD has a lofty goal–raising $100,000 in 30 days–but I believe we can do it.
I encourage you to visit I AM BIG BIRD’s official site, where you can watch the trailer and learn more about the film, and also to follow @Copper_Pot on Twitter, where the filmmakers will be releasing exclusive content daily from July 16th-August 14th.
About two years ago, my good friend and fellow animator Rich Fournier and I were waiting for the gates to open at the NY Comicon. Among the sea of cardboard Optimus Prime’s and homemade Stormtrooper outfits, I saw an older gentlemen standing at the door looking quite lost. In being a tremendous Muppet fan, I knew exactly who he was by his distinct Shakespearean haircut. I left my place in line and walked over trying to keep my composure over possibly meeting a living legand and introduced myself. It was indeed Caroll Spinney, the puppeteer behind Big Bird and Oscar The Grouch, and I immediately explained how big of a fan I was and what his work has meant to me as an animator. It was funny to think of all the attendees who rushed past him, not knowing how big of a celebrity this man was.
Caroll was accompanied by his wife Debra and they were trying to find their point of contact at the convention. We helped them get situated and they invited us spend some time with them in their booth. They were incredibly kind and overly willing to answer any questions Rich and I had. Caroll signed autographs for us as himself and for our children as Big Bird. It was an experience I will never forget.
Thanks for your support!