Header Ads

Kickstart This! Wittgenstein's Poker

Sometimes it's obvious why an animated projects turn to crowdfunding. Less commercial and more niche productions have often found success by appealing directly to their audience. Other times they seem much more like films or series that should be able to raise funding through more conventional means. Wittgenstein's Poker is firmly in the latter camp. With impressive talent behind it and an incredible voice cast attached, it feels like it should have no problem getting funded. But in the entertainment world, nothing is certain, and so the film has launched a campaign on Kickstarter.

The film recounts the events that occurred in Cambridge, England in 1946. A 10-minute confrontation occurred between the philosophers Ludwig Wittgenstein and Karl Popper: resulting allegedly in one of them threatening the other with a red-hot poker. Nobody knows exactly what happened in that room, but it has come to take on legendary status. 

Wittgenstein's Poker recreates this legendary meeting of great minds, that went on the become known as The Cambridge Poker Incident. The short will explore the infamous argument. A third man was also witness to events, becoming effectively umpire of the event.

The film has already secured a small but perfectly formed voice cast. The iconic Richard E. Grant voices Wittgenstein,  Karl Markovics plays Popper and Brian Cox voices the third man, Bertrand Russell.

The film is being directed by Christian De Vita, a 30-year animation veteran whose credits include Fantastic Mr Fox and Tim Burton's Frankeenweenie. It is based on a screenplay written by producer Casey Cohen, and is adapted from a book written by ex-BBC journalists David Edmonds and John Eidinow. The short is being produced in 2D hand-drawn animation, complemented by a watercolour style.

The crew also includes Danish artist Mikkle Sommer as lead designer, Christian Kuntz as lead animator and British composer Stephen Warbeck contributing the score.

Rewards on offer range from £10 for a digital copy, and include a virtual watch Party with director Q&A,  original art, storyboard masterclasses, ranging up to a visit to Wittgenstein's house in Norway, A Cambridge University tour and an engraved fire-poker. The ultimate reward is the extremely rare first edition copy of Wittgenstein's Tractatus from 1922, which comes with an optional Co-Executive Producer credit, and will set you back £7500.

The producers have set a delivery date for the film as 2026, but aim to fulfil the rest of their rewards within 2024. The film will be sent to backers after it has completed its festival run.

The project seeks to raise £30,000 before Friday, May, 31 at  8:21 AM BST. If you want to see it become a reality visit the campaign page now.