Kickstart This: Steampunk Western Adventure 'Cowboys & Engines'
by Ben Pearson
February 15, 2013
Welcome back to another edition of Kickstart This, FirstShowing's weekly column dedicated to spreading the word about cool indie projects that need your help to become a reality. This week, we're spotlighting a steampunk western tale called Cowboys & Engines, which hearkens back to classic adventure stories that we all grew up with, but with a layer of technology added on to put a twist on familiar material. It also stars Jeff Cannata from The Totally Rad Show and is produced by The Canyons star James Deen. Take a look at their pitch video below, and don't forget to toss these filmmakers a few extra bucks if you can. See below!
Zeppelins. Rockets. Steam-powered robots. It’s 1876, and Cade Ballard is trying to get to Mars…
So begins the description for Cowboys & Engines, an ambitious Kickstarter film project that stars Jeff Cannata as badass action hero Cade Ballard, with Walter Koenig (Pavel Chekov from "Star Trek") as a scientist who develops a powerful new technology, and Libby Letlow as Guinivere Wheeler, a dangerous and charming female foil for Cade. It's hard not to draw comparisons to Joss Whedon's Firefly considering how that franchise melds science fiction and western tropes together, but the steampunk element should bring a whole new fanbase out of the woodwork, since there haven't exactly been a ton of high profile and high quality steampunk projects as of late.
Writer/director Bryn Pryor, who seems like a huge geek (he's wearing a Weyland-Yutani shirt in the pitch video), has a very clear vision about what he wants to do with this project, and it'll be interesting to see what Deen can do behind the camera as a producer after so much on-camera work in the industry until this point. We're also psyched to see Cannata, a geek favorite who's been working in the L.A. theater scene for years now, snag a lead role in a film project. Overall, this is a huge undertaking with a tremendous amount of world-building involved, and this feels like a cult classic in the making. Check out their pitch video here:
For more info on Pryor's Cowboys & Engines, and to help support the project, visit its Kickstarter page. Director Bryn Pryor is hoping to raise $100,000 by Saturday, March 9th, so please donate if this is something you're interested in, and let's see if we can help them reach their goal before time runs out. If you can't spare the cash right now, maybe you could still help the filmmakers out by spreading the word to other friends who dig steampunk, westerns, or classic adventure stories.
That's all for this week's Kickstart This. Be sure to keep suggestions coming to BenPears85@gmail.com for cool projects you see that might need an extra push. My inbox is always open, and if you send in any Kickstarter or IndieGoGo film project, I can't always guarantee we'll feature it here, but I will definitely take a look at it. Thanks for your support for all of these projects, because they absolutely couldn't be completed without without the help of film lovers just like you. For our full archives, visit here. Worth funding?