We caught up with Jason Faller, one of the men behind Arrowstorm Entertainment and creator of several successful Kickstarter campaigns. Right now Jason is on the last few days of his latest Mythica campaign, The Darkspore, with Melanie Stone and Kevin Sorbo.
FB: Jason, tell us about Arrowstorm Entertainment. Where did the journey start, and how?
JF: Kynan Griffin and I met in film school, and started out making comedies … all the time talking about how we wished we could make fantasy and sci-fi films. Like many others, we didn’t believe that it could be done profitably without massive budgets and a big cast. Then we did a bit of an experiment – a low-budget film called Dragon Hunter. It performed very well internationally, and we started planning to create Arrowstorm Entertainment, a studio focused on creating science fiction and fantasy films. Four years and 13 fantasies later, here we are!
FB: Fantastic! In the last few years you have produced several important titles through successful Kickstarter campaigns. Why Kickstarter and how has your experience been?
JF: Kickstarter is crucial. I’d even say it’s the future of independent film. We aren’t (yet!) able to raise the full funding we need through Kickstarter, but the added funds do make a big difference. Sometimes they make the difference between being profitable and not profitable, and they always add to the budget to help us get bigger special effects. A lot of people comment on how good our dragons and creatures are … that all comes from our Kickstarter funds. But, most importantly, I’d say that Kickstarter gets us closer to our audience, to the fans. We listen carefully to what our backers want. If they like something, we know it can be successful. The amount we raise on Kickstarter often reflects quite accurately how well the film will do on all other platforms! Before Kickstarter, we mostly just sold our films to distributors, and from that point on never got to communicate with any of the fans themselves. I believe that our films are getting better and better partly because we know who our audience is and we know what they want … because of Kickstarter.
FB: I’m sure most people would agree with you on that one. Recently, you have been busy with Mythica: A Quest for Heroes, which is free to watch on contv.com. You are currently promoting Mythica: The Darkspore through a new Kickstarter campaign. Tell us more about the Mythica project.
JF: Mythica is a massive undertaking. Three films shot so far (we shot them back to back last year, six straight months of shooting), and two more planned and in development. That makes us a pretty big contender in the scheme of epic fantasy film series franchises. It’s a series about a runaway slave girl with innate dark powers. She puts together a team of heroes and they have adventures. Fun stuff. This is the series I’ve been dying to make since we started Arrowstorm. One 90 minute movie doesn’t give you the ability to really develop a story, but 5 movies opens up the possibility for something really lasting. Even when it’s daunting, it’s so much better than writing one-off films. The Darkspore is on Kickstarter right now, yes. It’s going very well, but we still need these last few days to cross the finish line.
FB: What’s in the future for Arrowstorm Entertainment?
JF: TV series. We’ll keep making fantasy and sci fi movies, but soon we’re going to go hard at doing a TV series. Mythica is good preparation for it, but we aim to launch a series that will rival Game of Thrones. That’s a tall order to fill, but why not shoot for the moon? We have a set of scripts right now called “The Outpost”, and it’s pretty exciting stuff. Can’t wait to greenlight it.
FB: Good luck Jason! And for any eager potential backers out there, do take a look at Mythica: The Darkspore, on Kickstarter. There are only 6 days left!