Bam! Pow! Bif! Superhero mockumentaries aren’t just for kids anymore!
Look! Up in the sky! It’s a hackneyed and overwrought device whenever superheroes are talked about in the media! No, it’s Zero Issue!
*tumbleweed blows past carrying crickets playing sad trombones*
(This is why it’s important to leave jokes to the professionals, kids.)
Just three weeks into their Kickstarter project, the fine folks behind Zero Issue have already reached their initial goal and have their sights set on some killer stretch goals. What is Zero Issue, you ask? Why, it’s a superhero mockumentary from New York Picture Company that focuses on one not-so-super super-powered average joe named, Dale Dinkle (note the apt alliterative secret identity that helps boast these dudes’ superhero cred). Deadpool by way of Best In Show, if you’re picking up what these guys are throwing down. Will they have jokes about the DC ‘90s event Zero Hour that spawned a million actual #0 issues? Maybe! Will it have a dog? Yes, but only if it can reach its first stretch goal! You don’t want to see an out of work acting puppy do you, you heartless monster? Damn straight. Check out the official press release below as well as storyboard images and be sure to visit the Kickstarter page! You can also follow New York Picture Company and Zero Issue on Twitter to keep up to date with all the superhero mockumentary goodness.
First superhero mockumentary, ZERO ISSUE, raises $30,000 on Kickstarter
NYPC has reached their initial goal to create an original superhero comedy.
ZERO ISSUE, the first mockumentary to center around superheroes, launched on the crowd-funding site Kickstarter, and in three weeks has raised over $30,000. ZERO ISSUE has been trending as Kickstarter’s most popular comedy, and the creators are hoping that’s a strong sign they’ll be able to achieve their stretch goals of producing a feature-length film and launching an original comic book run focused on the new world of superheroes they’ve created.
ZERO ISSUE is the story of Dale Dinkle, a guy whose only goal in life is to be recognized for his power: the ability to move (minor) objects with his mind. Every year Dale competes in a festival, where aspiring superheroes try to make a name for themselves. But, Dale fails to win and he becomes determined to achieve the fame he thinks he deserves. Will Dale aim for fame at any cost, even if it means becoming a villain?
Writer, and co-founder of New York Picture Company, Matthew Cullinan explains: “As kids we were all pretty obsessed with two things – superheroes and comedy. Even now, we keep finding ourselves drawn to movies from the school of Christopher Guest like Best In Show or more recently Taika Waititi’s What We Do in the Shadows or Marvel movies, like Captain America or Guardians of the Galaxy. So, when we set out to create our next project we wanted to take those influences and frame it around our greatest fear: never living up to our potential. And, what we ended up with was a whole new superhero universe, one that exists in our world, with real characters, filmed in a style that feels real, like The Office.”
Director, and co-founder, Jim Fagan explains how they hope to differentiate themselves from the thousands of similar Kickstarter campaigns: “Our pitch video is us dressed in tuxedos and begging our moms for money. It’s a tactic we think our hero, Dale, would be proud of… and definitely stoop to. Also, we don’t just have the usual rewards of posters and buttons; if you back enough you can unlock rewards where we slap, punch, or tattoo each other, which I’m really looking forward to.”
While superhero movies are a dime a dozen, with four major studio releases planned this summer, ZERO ISSUE positions itself as something different. Jim Fagan continues: “ZERO ISSUE is about the guy who wouldn’t make The Avengers. I mean, the Avengers wouldn’t even retweet him. But, our hero, Dale, believes he belongs up there with the big shots. He’s not good at hearing ‘no’, and who knows what will happen when he’s pushed too far. I know I’ve done crazy things chasing a dream. Ever swim a Venetian canal?”
It’s an idea that hinges completely on execution and the creators are aware of this. Matthew Cullinan puts doubters at ease: “Chronicle proved that you could make a fantastic found-footage superhero movie and What We Do in the Shadows laid the groundwork for making a genre mockumentary. We’re just combining those two concepts into a short film, and IFC’s Documentary Now proved you could make a funny, short, fake documentary with a beginning, middle, and end in 22 minutes”. The creative team also has over a decade of experience creating non-fiction television for networks.
But the team promises that it isn’t just for superhero die-hards. Executive Producer, Zach Bubolo, explains: “ZERO ISSUE is about the lengths we go to achieve our dreams, and how sometimes you can lose yourself along the way. We take a lot of inspiration from Ricky Gervais, and while his characters, like Michael Scott, can be pathetic losers, you still really cheer for them and want them to beat the odds. We also feel it’s time for someone other than DC or Marvel to make an amazing superhero movie.”