Saturday, February 8, 2014

John G. Avildsen Fan Puts Together Rocky Balboa-Worthy PR Campaign

It's not every Kickstarter campaign these days that gets multiple shots of media attention. The field is saturated, the story familiar.

However, John G. Avildsen: King of the Underdogs has the benefit of being about a man who made two of the most beloved movies of recent decades: Rocky and The Karate Kid.

The first burst of coverage came last Friday. In Carthage, TX, local newspaper The Panola Watchman honored native son and project director Derek Wayne Johnson with a plug and links. There followed a similar item in Jacksonville, TX newspaper The Daily Progress.

Johnson this past week also did an interview with Shreveport, LA TV station KSLA, where he now divides his time along with LA. The media attention has helped the filmmaker get three-quarters of the way to his goal of $20,000, with six days to go.

King of the Underdogs was inspired in part by the fall 2013 book The Films of John G. Advildsen by producers Tom Garrett and Larry Powell. Information from the book will be used for the doc, and Avildsen is cooperating with the project. As Johnson explains in the KSLA interview, he initially approached the filmmaker about collaborating on some scripts, and when that didn't work out, he suggested a documentary.

Update - 02/15/14: The project has been successfully funded. The final, raised total at campaign close February 14th was $29,222, helped greatly by a donation at the $7,500 tier.

[King of the Underdogs Kickstarter]

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