Surrealist Czech filmmaker and stop-animation pioneer Jan Švankmajer (81) felt the love of a loyal worldwide fan base last month after meeting half of the fund-raising goal for his new feature-length film, Insects, just two days after the campaign launched.
More than 700 donors pledged 73,000 USD, roughly half of the director’s 150,000 USD goal—the remaining portion of a larger film budget—following the May 18 campaign kick-off on Indiegogo.
To date $127,337 USD has been raised by 1,282 backers.
Švankmajer and his long-time producer Jaromír Kallista (77) have vowed to raise these funds on their own in order to secure artistic control over what could be their last film.
Many donors were astonished that such an iconic director had taken to the internet to raise money.
The film will mix elements of “The Insect Play” by the Čapek brothers while also reflecting on Franz Kafka and his famous “Metamorphosis.” The setting is afterhours in a Czech pub.
Švankmajer is said to be eager to start filming as soon as possible and has been “visiting entomological auctions, buying various kinds of bugs, and doing rehearsal shots with them.”
The director is best known for Alice, his dark take on the Lewis Carroll classic and Little Otik, possibly the creepiest movie about parenting ever made.
His influence has been cited by a number of filmmakers including Terry Gilliam, Tim Burton, and David Lynch.
It is hoped that the film will premiere in 2018.
To contribute visit Švankmajer’s Indiegogo page.