Sold

by Richard Cohen

IL

Before you read, watch the first two episodes at  https://vimeo.com/channels/sold3cf

     "Everyone wants carpet"

For a very short time, in order to pursue my filmmaking career,  I sold carpet to support myself. I traveled throughout the city of Chicago and made sales calls in people’s homes. The goal was to persuade them to buy carpet before I left their home. In short: TO CLOSE. You can imagine I met all kinds of people with a range of personalities, desires, and motivations. I heard it all, it seemed, and the diversity of people and personalities I encountered inspired me to write my episodic short-film series, SOLD. Each episode follows our young, inexperienced salesperson, Rufus, as he encounters customers who each seem to have individual reasons to buy carpet. My goal in creating this series is to depict, in a sometimes humorous, sometimes dramatic way, complex and realistic human behavior.  

     "The human comedy"

Rufus serves as the connection between the episodes and is the window through which we view the customers he encounters. Each episode, artfully shot and crafted in its own way, portrays a personality from the diverse population that makes up Chicago. Again, though the episodes at first show people purchasing carpet as related to their own peculiar needs, the episodes also address the more serious issues such as sexism, old age, racism, and parenting. The intent is always to create pieces that are both entertaining and engaging.  Ultimately, though, my goal is to depict some aspect of the human condition.

     "Wanna see the entire series?"

 I believe so strongly in this project that I have already self-financed and produced the first two episodes, and I invite you to view them on my Vimeo page at https://vimeo.com/channels/sold3cf.  Once we raise the funds--AND ALL DONATIONS ARE 100% TAX DEDUCTIBLE--my team is ready to begin preproduction, and the number of episodes we produce will depend on how much we raise.  Shorter episodic film series is becoming an exciting format. People who are on the move and have limited time are able to watch individual episodes: while taking the bus or train to work, during lunch, waiting for an appointment, etc. Even better: one can binge watch a season of SOLD in about 72 minutes! From a production perspective, the episodes take only one day to shoot and no more than 3-4 weeks in post-production. In the end, I want to have the series available not only on my Vimeo page and at the important new media festivals in the United States but also ready to sell to a Netflix and Amazon and be one of the first to break ground with short-format film series.

     "Please please please: help us fund the series"

I am asking you to donate as much as you can reasonably afford to enable me to complete this project.

If we can raise $12,000 we can produce the next two episodes in the series. If we can raise  $24,000 we can produce the next four episodes, which will complete the first season.  And--reaching for the sky--if we can raise  $48,000 we can film both the first and second seasons, and you will be on the ground floor of the entire series of SOLD.

When you watch the first two episodes you’ll see immensely talented actors like 

Danny McCarthy (Boardwalk Empire, Elvis and Nixon),

Cedric Young (Empire)

and

 Max Ganet (making his breakout performance)

who have already committed themselves to the series, and it is my hope that you will donate to our project to give still other actors the opportunity to shine in these other episodes. Also, adding to the great cast is

 Ann Whitney

 

     "See the actors shine"

It has been my longstanding goal to inspire people in Chicago to go see the amazing actors at the smaller storefront theaters, and this is an opportunity for people not just in Chicago but worldwide to experience this city’s great talent. I know that many people ask you for help, but I hope that you will see the uniqueness in and value of this project, and I can assure you that my team and I are a passionate and determined group to finish what we have started.  I promise you that in seeing the full range of episodes, you’ll find it a worthwhile experience. Thank you very much for taking the time to read this outreach, to forward this donation request to whomever you think would be interested in helping, and to donate yourself and support us in realizing our goals. 

Remember to watch Episodes 1 and 2 at https://vimeo.com/channels/sold3cf