Is Kickstarter kicking out pro-life projects?

posted at 2:01 pm on April 16, 2014 by Ed Morrissey

For the second time, producers of a planned pro-life film effort have had to switch from Kickstarter to IndieGoGo for their crowdfunding efforts. Filmmakers Phelim McAleer and Ann McIlhenny took their Gosnell Movie project to IndieGoGo after Kickstarter insisted that they could shut down the effort at any time if they didn’t like the language used to promote it, and another pro-life project called Stolen Moments has gotten a rejection letter from Kickstarter as well. The rejection, nearly two weeks ago, was on the basis of the campaign being, er … “self help” (via Katie Pavlich):

For the life of me I can’t figure out how anyone could consider our project self help. Let me briefly tell you about the project.

The project, Stolen Moments, is something I’ve been working on for the past few months with my friend, Andrew Koch.

It’s a simple idea. Everyone has a story to tell. Our stories are made of a special moments throughout our lives. Stories come from both the good and bad moments. Yet, due to abortion we’ve lost millions of potential moments in our lives. Moments that would be part of our story. Moments that were stolen from all of us.

We want to share through a series of short videos some of those moments we’re all missing because of abortion. It’s an idea I’ve fallen in love with and I think once you see what God has laid on our heart to create you will as well.

It’s thrilling to be at the point where we have a great crew assembled and to be ready to raise the funds. We were all set to launch and then got this upsetting news.

I love Kickstarter. If you look at my profile then you’ll see I’ve backed over two dozen campaigns in the last couple of years. They pioneered crowdfunding.

Self-help? Only in the sense that crowdfunding is all about self-help for filmmakers looking for independent sources of capital. That applies to literally everything Kickstarter and IndieGoGo does. If a documentary about the regrets of abortion doesn’t have any other purpose than self-help, then it’s mystifying how any other documentary on social issues from any point of view isn’t similarly disqualified.

Fortunately, Stolen Moments appears to have gone well on its way to raising its money. With 23 days left in the cycle, the filmmakers are just shy of halfway to their modest goal of $1500. The news is equally good for Gosnell Movie, where funding has gone over $820,000 — almost 40% of the goal with 27 days left in the campaign. The film picked up a couple of Hollywood endorsements in the last few days, too:

Nick Searcy and Kevin Sorbo have cut YouTube videos in support of a crowdfunding campaign to finance a TV movie about convicted killer and former abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell.

Nick Searcy, better known as U.S. Marshal Art Mullen on the FX television show Justified, is asking fans to donate money to some filmmakers who are producing a TV movie he says Hollywood would prefer not be made.

The movie is called Gosnell and is the true story of abortion doctorKermit Gosnell, who is serving life in prison for multiple murders. The funding for the movie will come by way of a $2.1 million IndieGoGo crowdfunding campaign. If filmmakers Phelim McAleerAnn McElhinney and Magdalena Segieda are successful, it will be the biggest campaign for a TV or movie project ever hosted at IndieGoGo.

Searcy, who leans right and often wades into political controversies via Twitter and other outlets, has cut a YouTube video in support of the Gosnell project that is set to go live today.

Anyone who follows Nick Searcy on Twitter knows that he has a great sense of humor and a pugnacity to say what he thinks at all times. The introduction of this endorsement video demonstrates the former, while the rest of it demonstrates the latter:

Kevin and Sam Sorbo offered an endorsement video two weeks ago:

I’ll be discussing Gosnell Movie on tomorrow’s Ed Morrissey Show with Phelim McAleer, but be sure to add your contribution to the crowdfunding effort now.


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Yeah I think I’ve backed my last kickstarter due to this crap.

Imrahil on April 16, 2014 at 2:04 PM

The project, Stolen Moments, is something I’ve been working on for the past few months with my friend, Andrew Koch.

Kickstarter saw the last name. That’s why they booted it.

nobar on April 16, 2014 at 2:05 PM

Speaking of Kevin Sorbo, his movie God’s Not Dead is a massive box office hit. It cost around $2 million and has already grossed over $41 million. Hollywood, take note.

Doughboy on April 16, 2014 at 2:05 PM

I backed two projects I liked on Kickstarter. Disappointed to hear that Ks has no cojones.

22044 on April 16, 2014 at 2:06 PM

I’m more than a little surprised that Hollywood has left the Gosnell story alone. Jodi Arias wasn’t even sentenced before there was a TV movie about her crime. You would think that some media outlet would take on the project, make Gosnell into some sort of saint among the poor and illegals for his work, the government into some Stasi-like organization intent on bringing down Gosnell by planting perscription drugs in his clinic….. etc.

Happy Nomad on April 16, 2014 at 2:13 PM

I’m more than a little surprised that Hollywood has left the Gosnell story alone. Jodi Arias wasn’t even sentenced before there was a TV movie about her crime. You would think that some media outlet would take on the project, make Gosnell into some sort of saint among the poor and illegals for his work, the government into some Stasi-like organization intent on bringing down Gosnell by planting perscription drugs in his clinic….. etc.

Happy Nomad on April 16, 2014 at 2:13 PM

Uh, Hollywood isn’t going anywhere near that mess. Why do you think the media blacked out the story? There was no way to spin in positively in their favor.

Doughboy on April 16, 2014 at 2:17 PM

Maybe the Gosnell movie should be called Kermit the Baby Flogger.

Steve Z on April 16, 2014 at 2:21 PM

Maybe the Gosnell movie should be called Kermit the Baby Flogger.

Steve Z on April 16, 2014 at 2:21 PM

The only movies Hollyweird makes with a Kermit involves a talking frog that dates a talking pig that know karate. I know, totally believable.

msupertas on April 16, 2014 at 2:30 PM

BTW what’s up with this movie about Secretary of Defense Don Rumsfeld that I’ve seen advertised on TV? Where did that come from?

slickwillie2001 on April 16, 2014 at 2:33 PM

Yes We Can: Saw Edition

faraway on April 16, 2014 at 2:35 PM

Thanks so much for mentioning these opportunities, Mr. Morissey. I had some tax return left over so it’s been wisely invested in both.

Genuinely hope they succeed!!!

lineholder on April 16, 2014 at 2:40 PM

Uh, Hollywood isn’t going anywhere near that mess. Why do you think the media blacked out the story? There was no way to spin in positively in their favor.

Doughboy on April 16, 2014 at 2:17 PM

It’s Hollywood. They make the abortion clinic into a Women’s health center, they clean up the clintele (less immigranty), they suggest that Gosnell is merely trying to get cheaper drugs to his patients, and they throw in an evil FBI or ATF agent intent on driving the clinic out of the neighborhood because he’s being paid off by the mob or something.

Facts do not matter so much in a medium where you can just make crap up. Like they did on The West Wing. They’d include some fictional study as part of the plot line and more than a few left-leaning pundits would be citing it as proof of their position by the next morning.

Happy Nomad on April 16, 2014 at 2:41 PM

So really kickstarter is only for liberals.

Time for some competition…

workingclass artist on April 16, 2014 at 2:43 PM

It’s Hollywood. They make the abortion clinic into a Women’s health center, they clean up the clintele (less immigranty), they suggest that Gosnell is merely trying to get cheaper drugs to his patients, and they throw in an evil FBI or ATF agent intent on driving the clinic out of the neighborhood because he’s being paid off by the mob or something.

Facts do not matter so much in a medium where you can just make crap up. Like they did on The West Wing. They’d include some fictional study as part of the plot line and more than a few left-leaning pundits would be citing it as proof of their position by the next morning.

Happy Nomad on April 16, 2014 at 2:41 PM

Hollywood for all their public posturing about abortion rights tends to avoid that subject in movies unless it’s a subplot snuck into the movie. The Cider House Rules(which I loved BTW and deals with the issue fairly even-handedly) is a good example. Shoot, sometimes they make movies that are unintentionally pro-life. The Terminator comes to mind.

Doughboy on April 16, 2014 at 2:48 PM

Liberal activists kill millions of babies each year. They should get the recognition they deserve.

faraway on April 16, 2014 at 2:52 PM

Contact them at press@kickstarter.com and tell them they are liberal fascists. It’s a free speech issue.

John the Libertarian on April 16, 2014 at 3:05 PM

Sorry – if bakers have to bake gay wedding cakes then kickstarter has no right to block perfectly legitimate fundraiser a because they disagree with the content.

Skywise on April 16, 2014 at 3:08 PM

Yes We Can: Saw Edition

faraway on April 16, 2014 at 2:35 PM

Dude….accurate, but tasteless. I hate liking it.

Mord on April 16, 2014 at 3:09 PM

Sorry – if bakers have to bake gay wedding cakes then kickstarter has no right to block perfectly legitimate fundraiser a because they disagree with the content.

Skywise on April 16, 2014 at 3:08 PM

There is the Rub. Leftists get to tell us all what is “legitimate” now, didn’t you get the memo?

Mord on April 16, 2014 at 3:11 PM

Is Kickstarter kicking out pro-life projects?

Once again, Hot Air asks the question that’s already been answered.

rrpjr on April 16, 2014 at 3:25 PM

Not really sure why anyone uses Kickstarter over IndieGoGo to begin with…

thirtyandseven on April 16, 2014 at 3:30 PM

You know who gets his funding through Kickstarter?

Michael Totten.

And he has been asked not to use Kickstarter because of these issues that Kickstarter has with Conservatives. So far, Totten has refused to move from Kickstarter to some other crowd-funding organization.

Don’t donate to Michael Totten.

chuckh on April 16, 2014 at 3:36 PM

So really kickstarter is only for liberals.

Time for some competition…

workingclass artist on April 16, 2014 at 2:43 PM

Looks like it is time to kick “Kickstarter” to the curb.

Sterling Holobyte on April 16, 2014 at 3:44 PM

So…don’t use it.

Heibao on April 16, 2014 at 4:03 PM

You know who gets his funding through Kickstarter?

Michael Totten.

And he has been asked not to use Kickstarter because of these issues that Kickstarter has with Conservatives. So far, Totten has refused to move from Kickstarter to some other crowd-funding organization.

Don’t donate to Michael Totten.

chuckh on April 16, 2014 at 3:36 PM

Oh please! STOP! So tired of these bullying tactics. It’s no different from what the Left does – punishing people for incorrect thoughts. If you want to fund the Gosnell movie, or anything else, go for it, but to say that anyone who is associated with Kickstarter is now on the Shun List is too much.

Buy Danish on April 16, 2014 at 4:19 PM

Here’s a movie idea:

“A Tale of Two Men” The subjects are Kermit Gosnell and Ben Carson. The plot shows how each of two men who started out as “a poor black child” became a doctor and………..

Then we explore why the MSM ignores each of them, curious.

FOWG1 on April 16, 2014 at 4:22 PM

Meanwhile, judge in action

Schadenfreude on April 16, 2014 at 4:32 PM

FOWG1 on April 16, 2014 at 4:22 PM

excellent.

rrpjr on April 16, 2014 at 4:40 PM

The project, Stolen Moments, is something I’ve been working on for the past few months with my friend, Andrew Koch.

Kickstarter saw the last name. That’s why they booted it.

nobar on April 16, 2014 at 2:05 PM

…Harry Reid made a few calls!

KOOLAID2 on April 16, 2014 at 4:43 PM

Sent $300 about a week and half ago.

Excited to see the end product.

KirknBurker on April 16, 2014 at 5:31 PM

Can someone explain to me why these projects can’t simply create a website and raise money directly that way? Or use text-by-phone, or good-old fashioned mail order? Why are they utilizing third-party organizations that lean left anyway?

Brian in Titletown on April 16, 2014 at 5:56 PM

Kevin Sorbo is proving to be a welcome change in Hollywood.

God’s Not Dead opens in the UK on the 18th. Early showings are going well.

lineholder on April 16, 2014 at 7:39 PM

It looks like a couple other pro-life projects have run on kickstarter and a few have even been funded.

I wonder if the size/prominence of these films are why they were bumped.

Quite honestly, even if they weren’t trying to boot pro-life projects, I could see them not wanting the hassle of any potential controversy of having these funded through their platform. Libs can be vicious if they believe you’re not towing the line appropriately.

JadeNYU on April 16, 2014 at 8:24 PM

Speaking of Kevin Sorbo, his movie God’s Not Dead is a massive box office hit. It cost around $2 million and has already grossed over $41 million. Hollywood, take note.

Doughboy on April 16, 2014 at 2:05 PM

My wife and I went to see God’s Not Dead at a movie theater on Sunday. It was sold out. It was the only movie sold out. We went to another theater. It was sold out there as well. Again, it was the only movie sold out. We went back on Monday and watched it in an almost fully packed house (on a Monday night!). The manager said that they have had to keep moving the movie to larger and larger theaters.

The movie was wonderful. It is well acted, well directed (is mostly well edited) and it has great production values. It is a good, solid Christian movie the like of which they used to make 60 years ago. It does suffer slightly from a plethora of side-plots, which sort of diffuses the focus of the film, but not too much.

I have recommended it to my friends.

Theophile on April 16, 2014 at 11:24 PM

Sorry – if bakers have to bake gay wedding cakes then kickstarter has no right to block perfectly legitimate fundraiser a because they disagree with the content.

Skywise on April 16, 2014 at 3:08 PM

What state are they in? Could they sue on the basis of precedent and win?

winoceros on April 17, 2014 at 1:06 PM