×

‘Citizen Koch’ Hits Crowdfunding Goal, Raising More Than $75,000 in Three Days

Kickstarter campaign reached over 1,700 donors

Never underestimate the power of small dollars in large numbers. “Citizen Koch,” a documentary critical of the billionaire Koch brothers and big money in politics, has surpassed its $75,000 Kickstarter goal in just three days with more than 1,700 donors.

The film, directed by Academy Award-nominated filmmakers Carl Deal and Tia Lessin, premiered at 2013’s Sundance and was set to broadcast on public television. That was before was before the Independent Television Service (ITVS), the public agency that funds and curates independent documentaries, pulled the $150,000 it originally committed to the documentary, reportedly in fear of offending the Koch brothers. The brothers have donated $23 million to public broadcasting and David Koch is a member of the board of directors of WNET in New York and WGBH in Boston.

The Koch brothers are billionaires who own Koch Industries, an energy and chemical conglomerate, and are known for their conservative politics.

To help bring the film to the public, the directors put the project on Kickstarter July 9 with a goal of half of the money that was cut. Three days later, they have raised $95,000. The campaign is a month long and, with 26 days left, filmmakers hope they can earn back all of the money that was cut.

The average donor pledged $53.31. According to the Kickstarter, the money will be used for the final sound mix, score, graphics, color corrections, creating mastered elements for digital retailers, licensing archival footage and music licensing.

While PBS was reportedly originally excited to air the documentary, David Koch had a negative reaction to “Park Avenue: Money, Power and the American Dream,” another PBS documentary critical of him. ITVS said they cut funding due to editorial differences.

Documaker Michael Moore has been among those lending support to the filmmakers.

Citizen Koch” primarily focuses on the 2010 “Citizens United” Supreme Court ruling, which eliminated bans on independent expenditures and effectively made campaign spending unlimited, and the effect it had on the 2012 Wisconsin recall uprising.

The Koch family has also had to deal with another crowdfunded documentary in the past: Robert Greenwald’s “Koch Brothers Exposed,” which included a full-fledged investigation of the brothers.

The “Citizen Koch” Kickstarter campaign ends August 8.

More Film

  • Taika Waititi Returning to Direct 'Thor

    Taika Waititi to Direct Marvel's 'Thor 4'

    Taika Waititi is returning to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The filmmaker will write and direct the sequel to his 2017 blockbuster “Thor: Ragnarok.” Waititi’s take on the fourth “Thor” movie puts Warner Bros.’ long-in-development “Akira” adaptation on hold indefinitely. However, the studio hopes that “Akira” can get resume production with Waititi at the helm once [...]

  • Akira

    'Akira' Production Put on Hold by Warner Bros.

    Warner Bros. has put its long-in-development “Akira” adaptation on hold indefinitely, sources tell Variety. Sources indicate that after a brief delay, the studio has pulled the plug on production indefinitely for the classic anime adaptation, which was set to begin later this fall. “Thor: Ragnarok” helmer Taika Waititi was on board to direct, and the [...]

  • Sir Elton John, David Furnish. Sir

    New Elton John AIDS Foundation Gala to be Held in the South of France

    Elton John and David Furnish are launching a new gala for the Elton John AIDS Foundation. The two will host the inaugural A Midsummer Party benefit on July 24 in the south of France at the Johnny Pigozzi’s private estate, Villa Dorane, in Cap d’Antibes. A cocktail reception will be followed by dinner, a live [...]

  • Sebastian Maniscalco Green Book

    Sebastian Maniscalco Moves Into Movies With 'Green Book' and 'The Irishman'

    As a comedian whose routines not only lampoon Italian stereotypes but demand larger-than-life performances of those cultural peccadilloes, Sebastian Maniscalco has carefully — if inadvertently — created a niche for himself as an actor. In 2018, in between selling out shows at Radio City Music Hall and Madison Square Garden, he took his first steps [...]

  • Erin Westerman

    Lionsgate Promotes Erin Westerman to President of Motion Picture Production

    Lionsgate has promoted veteran executive Erin Westerman to the post of president of production of its Motion Picture Group. Motion Picture Group chairman Joe Drake and motion picture group president Nathan Kahane made the announcement Tuesday. The post has been vacant since earlier this year, when it was held as a co-presidency by Peter Kang [...]

  • Sebastian Maniscalco

    Sebastian Maniscalco Celebrates 20 Years in Comedy

    Developing a rapport with hotel staff members is not uncommon for celebrities, especially those who travel frequently enough because of work or press opportunities to have multiple encounters with folks who carry their luggage, make up their rooms and serve them food. But when comedian Sebastian Maniscalco warmly greets the Four Seasons Los Angeles server [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content