I’ve always found a lot to love from Kickstarter.  While not everything coming out of the crowd-funding website is a winner, it’s given countless folks opportunities they wouldn’t have had several years ago.  I was initially drawn to Kickstarter projects when the Star Trek fan film community was running strong, and I’ve stuck around to read about, support, and sometimes promote exciting projects from independent and emerging filmmakers (see my posts on Somnio, RunawayLilith in the Gardenand Red Heaven).  In my recent peruse through live projects (in traditional The Continuing Voyage fashion, i specifically zeroed in on film projects in the science fiction & fantasy genres), I came across several that caught my eye that I wanted to highlight here:

1. The Rangers: Bloodstone

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The Rangers: Bloodstone is described on it’s Kickstarter page as, “a feature length fantasy film about the epic journey of a ranger, determined to rescue his daughter from the hand of evil Outlanders.”  This film, starring creator David Nordquist as Drustan Lorne, follows the events of the short film, The Rangers: Drustan Chronicles (which you can watch for free here).  Nordquist’s initial Drustan Chronicles short film gained popularity through YouTube and word of mouth and ultimately went on to win the award for best short film in the Canadian Diversity Film Festival in July of 2016.  With the amount of effort, passion and care that was seemingly put into making Drustan ChroniclesBloodstone will undoubtedly serve as an exciting follow-up and further flesh out Nordquist’s unique world and characters.

Check out the film’s Kickstarter page (which has already surpassed it’s goal!) for more information or to lend your support.

2. Mitchill City

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Mitchill City, from creator Asa Davis, is described as a series that will showcase a “universe of superheroes and villains of all colors and backgrounds”  After a mysterious event occurs in the city, those who witnessed it gain an array of unique abilities and powers.  The series aims to follow the people who inherited these abilities as they use them in their daily lives – some for better, and some for worse.  In the real world, where it has taken years for diverse heroes to finally make their way into the major superhero universes (both cinematic and comic book), it will be refreshing to witness the birth of a universe in which diversity of character is presented from the get-go.  From the initial footage, Mitchill City looks to be what Heroes should have been.

Check out Mitchill City‘s Kickstarter page and consider supporting this ambitious project.

3. Binary

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Binary, a live-action short film, from producer, Alex Rocca and director/writer Carol Liang, aims to tackle themes of sentience, love, and what it means to be alive.  On it’s Kickstarter page, the film is described as “the story of a man who must decide between saving his artificially intelligent girlfriend or a human woman during a crucial space voyage, causing him to question what love really means.”  While the film’s plot itself is an ethical dilemma, the potential to examine some other interesting philosophical questions with the backdrop of a traditional space opera is exciting; making Binary definitely one to look out for.

Binary is nearing its funding goal still with several days to go; check out their Kickstarter page to support this project or for more information.

4. Nomad

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I have a soft spot for out-there space operas and in this regard, Nomad looks to be right up my ally.  The short film looks to tell the story of 3 astronauts who’ve been tasked with colonizing an Earth-like planet, saving humanity from diseases that have ravaged our home planet.  On their mission, the astronauts carry thousands of embryos from all different countries and cultures and seemingly find success in their discovery of a habitable planet, that is until one of them starts to believe that humans don’t deserve to live on.  Nomad, like Binary above, has the potential to bring up some interesting ethical and philosophical questions while presenting a fun, deep-space adventure.

Check out Nomad‘s Kickstarter to learn more and support the project.

5. Dear Mankind

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Dear Mankind proclaims to be a sci-fi, comedy web series from the perspective of astronaut, Jan, and his A.I. companion, Dora.  At first, its a story of the boredom and solitude of a long-term space assignment, until an asteroid appears above the Earth.  The first episode is already out (and available to watch here).  The additional funding from the Kickstarter campaign will allow the creators to make the next 4 episodes as well as conduct interviews with real astronauts and representatives of the European Space Agency to try and get the science and representation of life in space as accurate as possible.

If the first episode is any indicator, this series will be a lot of fun for fans of science and science fiction, and I appreciate that the creators want to make a point to involve the ESA and real astronauts in future production.  For more, and to support this, visit Dear Mankind‘s Kickstarter page.