Actresses Amber Benson, Whoopi Goldberg, noted writer/producer Neil Gaiman and a number of entertainment industry veterans are rallying to make ailing filmmaker Michael Reaves’ final film “Blood Kiss,” a reality.
Michael Reaves, who is in the advanced stages of Parkinson’s disease, announced the crowd-funding campaign for his film on May 15th, with an initial goal of $50,000. Blood Kiss, set in 1940s Hollywood, is the classic film noir tale of a sexy jazz singer in distress and a Private Investigator who takes on a little more than he bargained for when he discovers this case involves mysterious vampires.
Award-winning writer/producer Neil Gaiman is among those rallying behind Michael Reaves and will be starring in the film as eccentric movie director, “Julian Cross”. “I’m willing to pretend that the prospect of acting doesn’t terrify me in order to help Michael Reaves make his film” said Gaiman, who is known for his work on such series as “Dr. Who,” “Babylon 5,” the film “Beowulf” as well as the popular comic book series, “The Sandman,” “Coraline,” “American Gods,” and others.
Actress Amber Benson is slated to play “Ruby Day”, the sexy jazz singer in “Blood Kiss,” is pleased with fans’ support so far, but more is needed to make the high-quality film the team is aiming for. “Michael has been a great supporter of not just his friends, but many, many others in the industry, with his encouragement, advice and his hands-on help,” said Benson who is known for her work on the series “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” “Supernatural,” and others, “but now is our turn to give back and make Michael’s dream of making his final film a reality.”
Others notables who have come forth to back the project include legendary animation writer, Paul Dini, best-selling author David Brin, famed comic book artist Tom Mandrake, actress Leah Cevoli, and actress/TV host Whoopi Goldberg who had this to say, “Can’t wait to see… feel the Blood Kiss!”.
Reaves is known for his prolific writing and producing which included scripts for such shows as “Batman The Animated Series”, “Star Trek: The Next Generation,” “Sliders,” “The Flash,” “Father Dowling Mysteries,” “He-Man”, “Dungeons and Dragons”, “Gargoyles” and many others. He has received an Emmy Award, a Howie Award, and the prestigious Hampton’s Prize, for his contributions along with many other nominations. In recent years, Reaves’ health has been impacted by advanced stages of Parkinson’s Disease, forcing the once vibrant and active writer/producer into a wheelchair and unable to speak other than through an electronic voice box.
To date, Reaves’ friends have collected more than the $65,000 in donations from fans through their campaign on Kickstarter.com, a crowd-funding website used by independent filmmakers. The campaign ends on June 14, which leaves very limited amount of time to donate to this film, and contribute to Blood Kiss. To access the site or to donate, please visit www.PledgeBloodKiss.com.
“Our fans rally behind Neil, Amber, and Michael. They love the concept! Now we shoot for our stretch goals to make an entirely fan funded film with major talent,” said veteran composer David Raiklin, who is also a producer on “Blood Kiss.”
Since the beginning, the fans have come out in full force, rallying for this project, giving it placement on Kickstarter’s “Most Popular” page, as well as publishing dozens of fan-written blogs, vlogs, podcasts, and even a “Blood Kiss” inspired drink and a book-sale fundraiser. “When it’s meant to be you don’t have to try to sell it,” said producer Daniela Di Mase. “The fans know what they want to see and they know that Blood Kiss is a great film in the making.”