ROH talent Nigel McGuinness issued the following statement today about his “LA Fights” crowd-funding project failing to reach its goal. The goal was to hit $370,000 by 1/31 for Nigel’s “LA Fights” project for a new wrestling series. The project only hit $76,163 by the end of 1/31:
From the desk of NIGEL McGUINNESS
February 2, 2015
Its five past midnight; five minutes from the conclusion of the LA Fights Kickstarter project. I wanted to reach out to both interested and unfamiliar parties, in an effort to provide a summary of the initial effort, as well as insight into the next steps.
Firstly, I would like to sincerely thank all donors and media outlets for their support and interest in LA Fights. While it has only been public for the last forty-five days, the project is the culmination of hundreds of hours of hard work over the last eighteen months (from writing a script, to developing a hybrid inring style, to budgeting, to researching funding, and finally launching a crowdfunding effort.)
Though we fell short of the desired goal, 441 people, even without a clear understanding of the final product pledged $76,163 because they so deeply desired something new in the industry we love. From all corners of the globe, donations ranging from 1 to 10,000, continued to pour in until the very last hour, amidst a continued sea of social media sharing and online discourse.
These actions reinforced what Ive always felt: I’m on to something. There is both a need and a market for something exciting and evolutionary within the current wrestling landscape. And for that reason, this project will continue.
Unquestionably, $370,000 was an incredibly lofty goal. This challenge was magnified by my inability to provide a sizzle or pilot proof of concept for people to truly grasp, and get excited about, the final product:
In short, LA Fights was constructed as a series. I felt anything less would not adequately reflect my vision and, accordingly, had concerns that providing intricate details on storylines, camera angles and inring style may alienate casual fans, and provide a complete, working, blueprint for anyone with the means to simply take the ideathemselves. Both were tremendous risks. My best option was to sell off the concept, hoping fans would rally around something that fulfills what they lack in the current mainstream product.
In trying to promote and address peoples questions around LA Fights, I did nearly fifty interviews and podcasts, held two Reddit AMAs, devoted countless hours to social media promotion, relentlessly pursued entertainment connections, and continuously strived to build my knowledge of the industry.
But that doesn’t mean my efforts were flawless.
The project was embraced by a portion of hardcore fans and independent wrestling insiders, but not close to enough. In many ways this ties back to the reality of social media in 2015 where posts disappear almost instantly into an exponential and unmanageable feed, and the passé nature of crowdfunding platforms in general to pro wrestling fans, where perhaps the sheer number of proposals, some unrealistic or disingenuous, overshadow andor undermine legitimate projects.
So what, exactly, is next?
In the interim, LA Fights will be removed from the crowdfunding platform, and the project rebudgeted with an eye toward discussions with a number of private investors and agencies. While it may take longer for LA Fights to come to fruition, it is imperative that the product is undertaken properly and with the total commitment of all concerned parties. You have my assurance that the LA Fights you see will reflect the product l’ve envisioned. That result uncuestionably outweighs aslight delay.
Moreover, to the extent I am reasonably able, I will keep all current backers updated as to the status of the project, as their support make this project their project now too. There is a sense of vulnerability that accompanies having a dream, busting your ass, and putting it out for the world to see. But, when people support and believe in you, its tough to do anything else.
I’ve put too much work into LA Fights, with too much faith, and too much support to step away now. Sometimes our dreams choose us.