Crowdfunding campaigns for independent online video properties are usually comprised of pitch videos, varied perks for cash contributors of increasing value based on the size of the contributions, and the promise of compelling content once the crowdfunding goals are met and production is complete.
East WillyB’s Kickstarter campaign, which is raising funding for a second season of the original web series includes all of the above, plus endorsements by Hollywood notables of Hispanic heritage, a Dominos Tournament & Fundraising Party at the real life East WillyB bar (that not only looked awesome and was totally apropos, but raised $1,000 for the show), and a Bushwick Barbershop cut-a-thon, from which all the proceeds will benefit the program’s production.
Pretty cool, right? Andre Royo from The Wire thinks so, too (and so does with Rick Gonzalez of War of the World and Lin Manuel-Miranda from In the Heights and that amazing hip hop song about Alexander Hamilton he performed at the White House Poetry Jam). Here he is telling you so.
“All the actors in the Latinos in Hollywood videos are fans & friends of the project,” East WillyB co-creator Julia Grob explained. And they’re helping her and Yamin Segal raise $50K in 50 days to make sure their project continues.
For those who haven’t seen the series, East WillyB is an original online comedy about the peoples living in Bushwick, Brooklyn who aren’t the hipsters and who aren’t the Orthodox Jews. The story revolves around Willy Reyes Jr., the the self-proclaimed Nuyorican “King of Bushwick,” who owns a bar that caters to the community’s Hispanic clientele and won’t compromise his Latino menu, music, or aesthetic to cater to a quickly gentrifying crowd.
Grob and Segal spent time in LA pitching the show to television execs before being told they were too “early” and decided to tap into the burgeoning trillion dollar Hispanic market by way of making an entertainment property of their own. Easty WillyB debuted the first installment of its initial six episode run in March 2011 and quickly garnered an ardent audience of young Latinos and a sizable amount of critical acclaim (from national outlets including, but not limited to Daily News, Fox News Latino, MTV, and – of course – Tubefilter).
Now Grob and Segal want to expand their multi-faceted, comedic portrayal of the Spanglish-speaking Latin-American experience into a full 12-episode second season, comprised of installments seven to nine minutes in length. That’s a lot of content to create! Especially for an indie production. So, Grob, Segla, the denizens of East WillyB and the show’s cast and crew are soliciting your help to make it happen.