Knowing that sometimes, all it takes is that one unexpected person to swoop into your life and give you $2 million, Zach Braff has turned to Kickstarter to finance Wish I Was Here, his directorial follow-up to Garden State. As he explains in his video appeal below, Braff just wants to make it okay to feel something again—namely the freedom from financers who demand things like input into casting or final cut or an actual return on their investment, when instead he could just seek out donors who will be happy just knowing he’s happy. Or, with receiving a “production diary” or PDF of the script, which are two of the lower-tier rewards one can receive.
Higher-level donors can do even bigger things like name one of the film's characters, attend a post-production screening where you can “help shape the final cut,” or even appear in the movie in an unpaid speaking role—all of which seem like exactly the sort of intrusive demands those “traditional” investors would make. But then, in this case, it’s family. And maybe that’s all family really is: A group of people that give you millions of dollars so you can make a movie, then don’t ask you to share the profits.
In case just changing Zach Braff’s life isn’t motivation enough, Braff has also graciously provided a synopsis you can help make a reality, then pay him all over again to see. Like Garden State, it concerns a “struggling actor,” this time in his 30s, who’s still trying to find his life’s purpose. Unlike Garden State, he finds it not by hanging out with a possibly mentally deranged girl but in home-schooling his two kids, a mission he undertakes by tossing the “traditional curriculum” and “teaching them about life his way.” For example, learning to throw off the shackles of conformity that comes with using your own industry clout or considerable personal finances to make your projects, when instead you can just beg for money on the Internet.