A Crowdfunding Event For Narrative And Documentary Film Projects

Submissions for 2021 Are Now Closed

The Hell’s Half Mile Film & Music Festival (Bay City, MI), Freep Film Festival (Detroit, MI), and Seed&Spark are excited to present an exciting collaboration…the 6th annual Crowdfunding Rally.  The Crowdfunding Rally creates the opportunity for filmmakers to capitalize on the excitement of film festivals by helping them convert festival-going fans into contributors. It’s designed for filmmakers who are ready to start crowdfunding their next project, or who are looking for a fresh approach to supplement their current funding efforts.

The Crowdfunding Rally is a two-part event that begins and ends online but makes a pit stop with a live pitch event for narrative filmmakers at the 15th Hell’s Half Mile Film & Music Festival and for documentary filmmakers at the 8th Freep Film Festival. If your project is chosen to participate then you’ll be asked to set up a campaign on Seed&Spark. Seed&Spark’s online crowdfunding platform is used to collect all the contributions that come your way from our audience, as well as from your network of friends and family in your own social media campaign.

Just consider us to be the friends you’ve asked to “check out” your crowdfunding campaign and “share” it with our friends. And the cool part is, all our friends LOVE independent film!

The Crowdfunding Rally has helped raise over $50,000 for participating projects!

“Participating in the Crowdfunding Rally was a lot of fun. I’d never pitched a project to a room full of people before, but with the help of Alan from Hell’s Half Mile and Erica from Seed & Spark, I was able to hone my pitch down to the essentials and share my project with the audience.

A few weeks after the festival, my Seed & Spark campaign for my second feature film, Four Bottles, finished. We raised 94% of our fundraising goal, and started production two months later. We’re in post right now and will hopefully screen the film at the 2017 HHM Film and Music Festival! There is an art to pitching projects, and if you’ve never done it before, this is a perfect place to start.”

“The crowdfunding rally was definitely a worthwhile experience. I received helpful pitching and fundraising advice from a crowdfunding professional (Christina Raia from Seed & Spark), and wound up meeting people at the rally that I wouldn’t have otherwise met. I was nervous to pitch in front of a crowd, but with encouragement and support from Christina and Alan, the campaign was a success, as we surpassed our fundraising goal for my feature film, Skippers.”

“The crowdfunding rally was a terrific experience. In addition to helping us exceed our fundraising goal, Hell’s Half Mile and Seed & Spark were wonderful resources, creating opportunities to network, coaching us on our pitch, and giving all-around great advice for fundraising. We highly recommend Hell’s Half Mile’s Crowdfunding Rally to any filmmakers who want to get their feature film plans off the ground.”

There are two ways to qualify

 You only need to meet the criteria of one of the two qualifiers.

Qualifier #1
The majority of the project will be produced in the States of Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Minnesota or the Province of Ontario. We’re all for supporting Midwest Filmmaking!


Qualifier #2 
Your film is in the 2021 Hell’s Half Mile or Freep Fest film program, or a past program, and you have another project in the works. We liked your film enough to program it, so now we want to help you get the next one made!

rally rules

SUBMISSIONS START: Monday, August 2nd, 2021
SUBMISSIONS END:  Monday, August 30th, 2021
NOTIFICATION: Tuesday, September 3, 2021
LIVE PITCH DATES:  Saturday, September 25 @ HHM (narrative), Sunday, September 26 @ Freep (documentary)

If your project is chosen to join the Rally than you’ll need to follow these rules. You do not need to create your Seed&Spark campaign to submit your project for consideration, but once selected, you will be coached by Seed&Spark on how to best set up your campaign for success.

All selected projects will need to create a campaign with Seed&Spark and all funding opportunities will transpire through the S&S platform. This is necessary for us to rally support for participating campaigns during and after the festival.

Your Seed&Spark campaign’s total revenue goal must be no less than $5,000.

If your project is chosen for the Crowdfunding Rally, you must be present for the at-festival pitch. Lodging for up to 2 nights in Bay City will be provided by Hell’s Half Mile for the narrative project presenters. Freep Film Festival will provide one night of lodging in metro Detroit for the doc filmmakers.

Here's how to join

  • Provide the following written information to apply for the Rally:
  • Narrative or Documentary
  • Logline (max 100 characters)
  • Short synopsis (max 300 characters)
  • Why does this project need to be made now?
  • What makes this film important to you, to film or to the world?

For questions or more info email alan@hellshalfmile.com

  1. Promotion of your film’s campaign through the festival websites and social media
  2. Coaching from Seed&Spark on how to set up your film’s campaign for success
  3. Coaching from Seed&Spark and the festivals  in advance of the live crowdfunding rally
  4. A Freep Film Festival 2021 pass for the doc filmmakers, and likewise at Hell’s Half Mile for the narrative entrants
  5. A $200 Freep Film Festival contribution to the Seed&Spark campaign for the doc filmmakers, and likewise at Hell’s Half Mile for the narrative entrants
  6. If the campaign reaches 500 followers, Seed&Spark will provide its Filmmaker Rewards package, valued up to $9,000 in products and services

This is all in addition to the potential contributions from our audiences!