Kickstart Your Weekend: 'Freedom Fighters' and 'Above All Else'

Crowdsourcing gets political in this week's projects

Freedom Fighters
Freedom Fighters

This week, we have two projects to feature, both with a bit of a civic angle. One deals in environmental issues and the other criminal justice; one has met its goal and the other has a long road ahead; but both are worthy of your consideration.

Freedom Fighters

Unfortunately, we hear plenty of stories about wrongful convictions and exonerations, but those stories are increasingly getting attention on screens big and small. And it's stories like this one that let us keep a little bit of hope about the whole process.

Freedom Fighters is the story of a handful of exonerated men in Dallas County who've formed an investigative unit to work with other individuals who claim they've been wrongfully accused and incarcerated.

But as subject Billy Smith puts it: "It's not about us; it's about justice and righteousness."

So, yeah, Freedom Fighters has already hit its $30,000 goal, but do what's right and help it out a little more in these last few hours. You have until 11:28pm to make a pledge, and funds are going toward production costs while the men take on new cases and editing for the footage they've already shot.

Watch more about Jamie Meltzer's project here:

Above All Else

What does Keystone XL mean to you? What about TransCanada pipeline?

If you were the man who staged a tree-sit to hold off the development of the pipeline through his land, it's something pretty personal.

Above All Else seeks to tell that man's story in the "ultimate David and Goliath" film. But it's, of course, a bigger story than even that, bringing in the community and the nation in a huge, controversial discourse.

Even with 259 backers, the Kickstarter project is $23,000 short of its goal, but they have 10 days to go.

See the full pitch video below:

Kickstart Your Weekend is a series intended to showcase Texas film and tech projects that are crowdfunding their way to a goal, be it distribution, a prototype, or production costs. If you have a project that we should know about, email us at

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

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Kickstarter, crowdfunding, Freedom Fighters, Above All Else, Keystone XL, TransCanada pipeline, Texas, wrongful conviction, exonerees, criminal justice, environment

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