Penn Jillette is a large man with long hair often pulled back into a ponytail who’s known for the magic act he and partner Teller have been performing together for decades, among other things. One of the things Jillette has dabbled in is movies, and he’s taken to one of the various crowdfunding websites out there to secure money for a horror movie he wants to make with Adam Rifkin.
As anyone who’s contributed to a crowdfunding project such as the ones found on Kickstarter knows, there’s goodies offered for each amount you donate to further entice you to chip in. Jillette took one of these offerings to another world, by offering the signature ponytail right off the back of his head. Rifkin’s ponytail as well. For $25,000. And, as it turns out, that offer has been accepted by Randy Pitchford, CEO of Gearbox, the makers of the hit video game series, Borderlands. Pitchford will also be an executive producer on the movie, and get lots of other goodies for his donation.
Continue reading for more on the movie, and to see Jillette’s awesome pitch to you the potential donator.
The movie is titled Director’s Cut, and stars Jillette as a very bad man. It will be directed by Rifkin, who’s previous credits include Detroit Rock City and Look.
Here’s a description by Penn himself:
OK so what is it?
Director’s commentaries on movies have been popular as DVD and Blu-ray “extras” long enough that all movie-goers are familiar with the conceit. In fact, movie fans have come to expect them from all of their favorite films and filmmakers. “Director’s Cut” utilizes this collective audience knowledge for a new kind of meta, multileveled plot. As “Director’s Cut” begins, we find ourselves watching a taut cop thriller called “Knock Off”.
It’s a creepy murder mystery in the vein of “Se7en” and “The Silence of the Lambs”.
It’s about an older FBI agent and his gorgeous new partner working on a serial killer case where the murderer is mimicking well known killings of famous serial killers of the past. The movie has a great cast and as it plays out we hear the director’s constant commentary as VO over the scenes. He shares tidbits about the making of the movie and stories about working with the actors. Especially the leading lady. In fact, the director seems strangely focused on his starlet. Fixated beyond what one might expect from a professional film director. It’s creepy. As the film continues to unfold we slowly start to realize that this voice is not the film’s actual director at all, but that of an obsessed fan who thinks he’s the director. He’s actually a psycho who is stalking and terrorizing the lead actress.
But wait there’s more!
We start to see hidden, amateur hand held video of our actress edited into the movie. Shots taken from the side of the set without her knowledge. Our stalker has obviously snuck onto the soundstage and is near the real actors. Shots following her home. One of these horrifying video sequences shows the actual kidnapping of the lead actress. Now our villain has the actual actress, the object of his obsession, imprisoned in his home dungeon, where he’s erected child quality sets from “Knock Off” and he makes her reshoot scenes she’d already done, but this time the way he wants them to play out. With him as her love interest. All the while the Director’s commentary keeps going, with that same calm and detached tone.
Act as if your life depends on it.
As our starlet acts for her very life, we’ve gotta ask, will our leading lady ultimately fall prey to our psycho director’s planned climactic conclusion, or will “Knock Off” have a happy ending”¦?
The goal set for the project was just under $1 million, and they’ve currently raised almost $770,000 with 12 days remaining in the campaign. You can head over to FundAnything to chip in, where you’ll also find videos of lots and lots of celebrities talking about what a bad guy Jillette can be.
Here’s Jillette’s pitch, which is very worth watching (and a little NSFW). It’s very smartly designed to show off Jillette as himself, who everyone knows, and the very bad guy he can become, while also offering a glimpse at what the promise the movie to be, which is funny at times, smart, and also scary.