Can crowdfunding be the answer to a new movie about Bruce Lee, undoubtedly one of the greatest known martial artists in the world? James DeMile, a former student from Bruce Lee’s Seattle period will soon find out. DeMile hopes to bring to the big screen the little known story of Bruce Lee’s years in Seattle, Washington (1959 to 1962), as well as the stories of his first American friends. Known as the Seattle years or Bruce’s “fighting period”, Bruce Lee gathered around him, a group of men with extensive fighting backgrounds who would challenge him and help propel him to his goal, becoming the best known martial artist in the world. His first students, Jesse Glover, Ed Hart, James W. DeMile, LeRoy Garcia were street fighters who were unpredictable and very aggressive. DeMile says, “We were hungry to learn Bruce’s skills and our group would meet and train every day at school, after school and often far into the evening.”
DeMile hopes that crowdfunding will be the answer to getting his independent film made. Crowdfunding is a means to raise money through social media fundraising sites like Kickstarter, where people donate or invest small amounts of money to a film project. This process has been successfully utilized by several prominent independent filmmakers. By raising the funds themselves, independent filmmakers hope to retain creative control over their projects. In the 1980’s DeMile had met with backers about his film and even started the casting process, but found the studio process too slow and restrictive. DeMile says, “By producing the film independently, I will be able to tell the story my way.” DeMile’s own personal story is compelling along with those of the other dynamic members of the Seattle group. This diverse group come together to become Bruce Lee’s training partners. The film will focus on the profound impact Lee had on their lives, changing them forever.
Although Bruce Lee died 40 years ago, his memory and legacy are still strong even today. There have been ten biographical films about Bruce Lee since his death, the latest in 2013, which offered little new insight or information. In 2005, statues were erected to his memory, the first in Bosnia one day before another was unveiled in Hong Kong. Forums are dedicated to him, his philosophies and the arts attributed to him, Jun Fan and Jeet Kune Do. Youtube is replete with tributes and thousands of people point to Bruce Lee as a pinnacle inspiration in their lives
. His fans still can’t get enough of Bruce Lee and his legacy and here is an opportunity for them to become part of that legacy.
DeMile’s film will offer Bruce Lee fans something they crave, new factual information, and a fresh insight into Lee’s early years as a new American citizen as well as the fascinating men that became his friends. DeMile is using social media and appealing to Bruce Lee fans all over the world to help him raise the funds needed to make his film, offering incentives for donations. He believes the time is right and that thousands of people are eager to learn more about the history of the Seattle group. With the recent death of his friend Jesse Glover, Bruce Lee’s first student in America, DeMile feels a sense of urgency in getting his film project completed. Bruce Lee fans that invest or contribute to this new film project will certainly not be disappointed. Crowdfunding means direct involvement making fans instrumental in getting the indie film made. DeMile hopes to create a resurgence of interest in Bruce Lee’s early years and recognition of the Seattle group’s historical significance. Here is an opportunity for DeMile and Bruce Lee fans to make history together.
For more information about the film contact James W. DeMile at firstname.lastname@example.org or through Facebook. DeMile has created a website called Bruce Lee Biographical Film at http://demileleefilmproject.com/about/ and donations can be made to Kickstarter, project name: Bruce Lee’s early Seattle Years.
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