Kickstart This: 'Ingenious' - An Indie Drama Starring Jeremy Renner
by Ben Pearson
September 9, 2012
Welcome back to another edition of Kickstart This, FirstShowing's weekly column dedicated to spreading the word about indie projects that need your help to become a reality. Today, we're featuring an indie that's already completed filming and is hoping to secure distribution funds for a theatrical release. It's a drama called Ingenious that has some pretty heavy hitters in the cast, including Jeremy Renner, The Grey star Dallas Roberts, and Munich/Angels & Demons actress Ayelet Zurer. Check this out, leave a comment to tell us what you think, and don't forget to toss the filmmakers a few bucks if you can help out. Check it out!
Ingenious tells the story of two friends, an inventor (Roberts) and a charismatic salesman (Renner), whose lives crumble before they have a breakthrough and invent an item that becomes a worldwide sensation. It's not 100% explicitly clear from the trailer what that item actually is (though I have a good guess), but that part of the story really doesn't matter; that subplot is secondary to the real story these guys are trying to tell, one that deals with big themes of friendships, loyalty, faith, hope, and perseverance. One of the coolest aspects of this project is that it's based on a true story, and the filmmakers raised the money to make this movie partly through profits from the invented item seen in the film.
Director Jeff Balsmeyer has spent years pulling together money to finalize the expensive post-production process, but since Ingenious was shot over two years ago, it has already run the festival circuit and won multiple awards, receiving positive reviews in the process. It was made before Renner became the mega-star that he is today, and there's something special about watching someone's early work knowing the heights their career will reach one day. (e.g. Natalie Portman in Leon: The Professional.) Plus, fans of The Mighty Ducks will be pleased to see Marguerite Moreau, who played Connie in the Disney classic, holding her own in this cast as well. Take a look at the pitch video along with the film's trailer:
For more information about Ingenious, or to help fund the project, visit its Kickstarter page. Producer Brian Neufang and Arriba Films are hoping to raise a total of $48,000 by October 13th. There's plenty of time left, so we should be able to help get enough funds raised to have a chance to see Ingenious in theaters. Please consider donating, and if you can't swing it right now, maybe you could Facebook it, Tweet it, and spread it around to your friends. With everyone's help, we'll help these filmmakers achieve their goal.
That's all for this week's edition of Kickstart This. We're always looking for feedback, so feel free to sound off with any suggestions for this column in the comments below. Also, my personal inbox is always open at BenPears85@gmail.com, so please continue to shoot any worthwhile Kickstarter or IndieGoGo projects my way, and there's a chance you'll end up seeing them featured in a future column. As always, I want to thank you guys for supporting these projects, because they definitely couldn't exist without without the help of film lovers just like you. For our full Kickstart This archive, visit here, and be sure to tell us what you think.