THR reports that indie French production company Europacorp will allow film fans to get in on the action in producing one of their upcoming projects. Weareproducteurs.com will allow Internet citizens to participate in all the stages of producing a film -- from choosing from a group of potential directors, to voting on the script, to even kicking in some of their own money toward the financing (lucky you!). If that weren't enough, everyone involved will be "working" alongside Luc Besson.
Besson, director of classic films like The Professional and La Femme Nikita and a well known producer, says he hopes the project will be an educational one when it comes to combating Internet piracy. "Because of piracy issues, we as producers have this image of being the 'bad guys' among Internet users. It's time to revive the dialogue between us." He added, "It's our way of telling web users: Don't wage war with us. Learn how to make a movie with us, and then you'll understand what's at stake when you illegally download films."
The cynic in me thinks the piracy education goal is a sham -- and that the real purpose of this exercise is to convince people to donate money toward the production of a film by creating the illusion that they're part of the process. Anyone who really believes they're a "producer" for voting on script choices and having their name in the end credits (something offered as an incentive to the first 10,000 donors) is only tenuously connected with reality.
Besson's even hired a "panel of experts" composed of various film people who will help "guide" voters on their choices and offer feedback on where the project is headed. Or, in other words, to help ensure Besson gets the film he wants.
So, what do you think? Sound like a cool idea or an unconventional way to raise money for a project? Would you actually contribute a few dollars just to see your name in tiny print on a theater screen? Sound off below.