T E S T raised a portion of
its post-production budget via the crowdfunding site Kickstarter.
Projects remain archived after they've completed funding. To see T E S T on Kickstarter
The Kickstarter video for T E S T
The text from the Kickstarter campaign that accompanied the video above:
TEST - A FEATURE FILM IN POST-PRODUCTION
A poignant, powerful story set in the San Francisco modern dance scene of 1985, in the early years of the AIDS epidemic.
SUPPORT TEST - YOU'RE IN GOOD COMPANY!
With prestigious grants from the San Francisco Film Society, the Kenneth Rainin Foundation and the Horizons Foundation, Serious Productions recently completed principal photography on TEST, the second feature film by award-winning writer-director Chris Mason Johnson. With your support through this Kickstarter campaign, we will be able to finish post-production on TEST and launch it at a major international film festival before bringing it to you via VOD, Netflix and in your local art house theater. (Read on for an explanation of what "post-production" entails.)
THE STORY OF TEST
TEST is a poignant, powerful story of friendship and hope in a time of crisis, set in the San Francisco modern dance scene of 1985 in the early years of the AIDS epidemic: when headlines threatened a gay quarantine, when nobody knew for certain how the disease spread, when dancers were afraid to touch each other because they might get it from sweat...
From the trauma of the AIDS epidemic there were stories of suffering and death, and political activism, that needed to be told first. But the early history of the epidemic is big and complicated, and there are untold stories that frame the subject in a different light and need to be heard now as well. TEST is one of these. It's a very personal movie with universal appeal: protagonist Frankie is a classic underdog who faces homophobic bullying at work and the newly named AIDS epidemic outside of it. His courage and resilience are tested.
A PROVEN TRACK RECORD
The filmmaking team behind TEST brings an enormous amount of commitment, passion and experience to this project, as well as a proven track record with a successful first feature. THE NEW TWENTY is currently distributed on Logo, iTunes, Netflix and Amazon, among others, and in Canada, Germany and France. It's a small film that has found an audience, and with your support TEST can find an even larger one!
THE TEAM BEHIND TEST
TEST has brilliant new choreography by critically acclaimed choreographer Sidra Bell, original music by renowned composer Ceiri Torjussen, and beautiful cinematography by up-and-coming Director of Photography Daniel Marks, as well as a cast that includes Matthew Risch, fresh from his leading role on Broadway in OTHER DESERT CITIES, and dancers from the San Francisco Ballet, Joffrey Ballet, and local modern dance companies in San Francisco. (See below for a full list of Cast and Crew.)
TEST has been shot on an ultra-low budget without sacrificing a high production value, and now that we've shot a beautiful film we need to fund post-production!
WHAT IS POST-PRODUCTION?
It's everything that happens after the film is shot and before it's ready to market and screen. Shooting a film is only half the story. Next comes: editing, mixing the sound, color correcting the footage, creating a full-length original score, paying for additional music rights and editing music to picture, plus all kinds of technical details to conform the film to HD standards so it can be streamed, downloaded and projected.
With your support we look forward to finishing post-production on TEST and sharing it with you and audiences around the world.
In addition to fundraising, crowdfunding helps filmmakers connect with their audiences in very personal ways.
Many months after the Kickstarter campaign was completed and as T E S T was beginning its festival run (in June, 2013), writer/director Chris Mason Johnson remembered one message from donor Christian Charette:
"I lived in San Francisco from 1982 to 1992 and lost my best friend Alan Renoud to AIDS in 1986 after a 15-month battle. (His name is on one of the original AIDS quilt panels first displayed on the Mall in Washington DC. )
I remember the numerous vigils at the hospital where one had to wear gowns and masks for fear of catching the disease and friends being afraid of touching Alan (and if they did, quickly excusing themselves to go wash their hands); of getting a call in the middle of the night telling me that he had died and when I showed up an hour later seeing all his meager belongings already in an orange garbage bag ; of closing his eyes; of telling his folks that their only child had just died; of spreading his ashes from the Neptune Society boat around Angel Island. For all of us who lived while others died..."
When Christian was asked if we could post his comments on this website, he wrote back:
"Feel free to use my comments any way you want. I am proud to be a gay man. If Alan had not been diagnosed we would have become lovers. Instead we became best friends. Because of him, I joined FrontRunners, the gay running club. When he ran for president while dying of AIDS, I ran for VP and became president when he died.
Good luck with your project. I have never donated to something like this before. You hit a raw nerve. For all the Alans in this world, the story needs to be told. Why he got AIDS and not I, God only knows."
Thanks to our Kickstarter Backers
Anne Parker Johnson
Carolyn & Huston Marlowe
Diane Scribner Clevenger
Gene & Jan McCullough
Glenn K. Graham
Jay S. Wiley
Jayson A. Johnson
Jennifer Grissette Laemmerhirt
Jose Maria Francos
Mary Ellen Cetra
Michael Kennedy & Ron Spalding
Nancy Ellen Jones
Peter L. Stein
Vernon L. Scott