My heart is full and I am a bit light-headed by this Kickstarter experience. You have amazed me. We closed today with $39,020. I think what has touched me the most about this experience is your diversity: some of you are classmates from my school days, grade school, high school and college. There are childhood friends of Duanne and antique car fanantics (and I mean that in the most positive way) who worked, played and worked with Duanne. There are family members who contributed generous amounts with whom I have had only sporadic contact and relatives who have lived this nightmare daily and still made a contribution. Former bosses – even one who fired me several years ago– donated generously. You are colleagues at the universities where I teach and the support staff whose discretionary income is limited and still you chose to help. You are mental health professionals I have never met or met only in passing and you have reached into your pockets. How can I express what that kind of validation of the project feels like? Several of you are my mother’s Spanish students who treat her with such respect and adoration. Then there are my students who know full well that I think their money should be spent elsewhere and in their one act of rebellion openly defy me with their generosity. Many of you are my champions who, regardless of my project, push me forward with kindness and resources. Although I question your wisdom at these times, I love you for it nonetheless. And a good many of you, more that I’d like to think, are people who have been touched by the ravages that mental illness causes and believe in the value of this project.
Money is a funny thing. I think money has the ability to spotlight the already inherent qualities or faults of a person by how they chose to spend it. My first step will be to get fiscal sponsorship through the International Documentary Association and begin applying for corporate grants. My brother’s story continues to unfold and I hope to be in Portland in September to do a shoot. I hope against hope that the ending to the film will not be similar to what happened this weekend in Colorado, although Duanne already posted on Facebook that it was a FBI entrapment of this man similar to one he had experienced. I will continue to contact you though Kickstarter, but I am also setting up our online community at www.madnessthemovie.com. Please stay in touch and remember that I am open to any and all comments or suggestions.