Latest Celebrity Kickstarter Film Fumble: Shemar Moore

TV star's 'The Bounce Back' has collected less than $75,000 in its first four days

In the latest display of Kickstarter’s potential pitfalls for stars, “Criminal Minds” actor Shemar Moore’s $1.5 million campaign to produce the film “The Bounce Back” has collected less than $75,000 from just 384 backers in its first four days.

The news comes two weeks after Melissa Joan Hart cancelled a $2 million campaign for the rom-com “Darci’s Walk of Shame” one month into its 45-day run after earning only $51,605 from 315 backers.

The low “Bounce” and “Shame” tallies follow two of Kickstarter’s biggest campaigns—for Rob Thomas’ Warners-distribbed “Veronica Mars” (earning $5.7 million on its $2 million goal) and Zach Braff’s “Wish I Was Here” (earning $3.1 million on its $2 million goal)—which created an online backlash questioning why  fans should fund millionaires’ passion projects.

Moore spent a decade on “The Young and the Restless” and eight seasons on the CBS’ “Minds,” garnering more than 265,000 Twitter followers and nearly a million “Likes” on his Facebook page.  But he hasn’t appeared in a feature since 2005’s “Diary of a Mad Black Woman.”

“Bounce,” to be directed by Youssef Delara (“Filly Brown”), is billed as “a heartfelt romantic comedy about finding the courage to love” starring Moore. Donation prizes range from screenplays and posters to private screenings and a speaking part in the film.

On its Kickstarter page, Moore writes that his aim is to raise the film’s entire $3 million budget via crowdfunding “so we could begin production immediately. If we don’t reach the ultimate goal . . . I feel confident we can find the rest through regular channels . . . a.k.a. those dreaded financiers.  At a minimum, if we raise 50% of that final budget we can make ‘The Bounce Back’ happen, the way I envision it.”

In a video posted on his Kickstarter page, Moore displays not only humor and charm, but killer abs: The actor whips off his shirt barely a minute into the video to reveal his sculpted upper body. Like Braff, he also uses the video to lament the lack of creative control in filmmaking, particularly on the casting front.

“Let’s just say I wanted to cast one of my boys as my best friend in the movie,” said Moore in his video. “If the financiers get wind of that, t hey’ll say ‘whoa, why can’t we get Samuel Jackson or Denzel Washington?'”

Continuing at its current rate, “Bounce” would make around $450,000 (or 30 percent of its goal) by the end of its month-long campaign, but crowdfunding analysis site Kicktraq says it’s too early to project a final tally. Kickstarter pledges often follow an inverted bell curve, with the largest amounts arriving at the start and end of a campaign. (Nearly half of “Shame” pledges were made during the first three days of its online posting.)

Part of the slow start may be a lack of specifics on why the film can’t be funded via conventional financing, as well as the campaign’s promotion: a Google search for the project garnered less than 100 results.

Moore’s reps did not respond to a request for comment by press time.

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  1. Nish Phillips says:

    This campaign ended up being funded and if you will take a look at the link, most of us have not received the perks we payed hefty fees to get. They owe me $500 for a set visit that they never honored. I have sent numerous emails for a refund they promised. It has been over two years and many of the people say they haven’t received the small perks that they ordered like water bottles. Somebody should be held accountable and made to refund the money. This is plain stealing.

  2. MalcolmX says:

    when will these niggas learn…

  3. Megan Cooke says:

    It’s really quite simple why these projects aren’t doing as well. Veronica Mars was a project the fans championed and had buzz about before they even created a Kickstarter campaign fans had been devastated by the cancellation of the show and had expressed interest in it beforehand.

    Zach Braff is a well know and liked celeb with a Track Record. His first film was wonderful and of a style that lends itself to being financed this way. Fans loved his movie and want him to be in control of his next project because they want more from him.

    This film isn’t like those. Yes it has a celeb it its helm but he will star in it NOT direct. And the premise of the film has been done before! We have had a few movies based on relationship books recently such as ‘He’s Just Not The Into You’ & ‘Think Like A Man’! This film is a formulaic premise that Hollywood would easily back as it has a track record.

    I have no issues with celebs using Kickstarter. I supported Zach Braff’s film and believe in his vision. I will not be supporting Moore though. I don’t think it’s worth it. That doesn’t mean I wouldn’t see the film when it comes out – although if I’m honest I’d probably wait till it came on TV.

  4. Perhaps a lemonade stand….

  5. Jude Plunkett says:

    I am one of those who have made a pledge. Whilst I like Shemar himself this is not my main reason for pledging. I am interested in the creative aspect of making a movie and, whilst I am not naive enough to believe this gives me any major involvement, it will provide me with just a small glimpse of what is involved.
    Personally I do not have problem with money being raised in this way; it is all relative. I am a freelance writer and do not earn mega bucks so if someone asked me if I would spend say $10,000 on something that I believed in but was not guarantee to succeed I would prefer to spread the responsibility. My point is that, especially in this day and age, anyone is going to be wary about investing a large chunk of personal cash on something that is not 100% guaranteed twenty four carat success.
    So does that mean creativity should suffer; I don’t believe it should. If people have the opportunity to be involved in creating a piece of work, however small the involvement might be, then that is a good thing.
    Will ‘The Bounce Back’ meet its goal? We shall have to wait and see. I really hope it does, and that Kickstarter continues to assist creativity, whoever instigates the project.

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