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Spike Lee: 'Good karma made kickstarter film funding campaign a big success'

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Nov 17, 2013 | 7:01pm EST

Filmmaker Spike Lee believes the success of his recent Kickstarter.com campaign to fun his new movie is all down to good karma, because he has donated large cash amounts to help other directors get projects off the ground. His new documentary, Da Sweet Blood of Jesus, was funded by fan donations of the crowdsourcing website - Lee initially set a target of $1.25 million (£830,000), but that was eclipsed as film lovers raised $1.4 million (£930,000), and now the director is convinced his past generosity paid off big time. He tells WENN, "I've invested in at least eight or nine projects since I got on Kickstarter. If you go to Kickstarter and look under Spike Lee you will see the list of the films and the amount of money I've contributed." And he admits the Kickstarter idea is nothing new for him - he was raising funds for films before the Internet really existed. He explains, "The principle of Kickstarter I've been doing since before there was Internet, before there was Twitter. I used those principles for She's Gotta Have It in 1985. The final cost (of that film) was $175 (sic) and I didn't have that money. "There was no Twitter. Social media was me calling people up, writing postcards, putting a pen to paper and writing letters asking people for money. I got grants and donations from friends. We saved our bottles for the nickel deposit. The principle has not changed, just the technology." His film funding campaign came at a high price for Lee personally - he now has to spend more than $120,000 (£80,000) on basketball tickets after offering big donors the chance to join him courtside at New York Knicks games. He adds, "The best giveaway is the most expensive one, where you get to sit with me courtside at a Knick game and go to dinner. That was $10,000 and we sold 36 games, but now I've got to pay for tickets too and the ticket is $3,400!"

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