Men who love the show My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic—despite their fandom meeting with societal skepticism—call themselves bronies. Apparently, bronies have long felt discriminated against, and a documentary that aims to change those misperceptions is raising funds on Kickstarter. The film is called BronyCon, and it will document the annual BronyCon convention, taking place in New Jersey this month. “Some people don’t understand bronies,” says director Michael Brockhoff in the pitch video. “They make fun of them, they marginalize them, they just don’t get it.” Confused, having never heard of bronies, I turned to Urban dictionary, which explains this phenomenon for the brony-ignorant:

“While generally associated with a negative stereotype by outsiders, due to its former 80s frilly girly-girl twinkle-toed tea-parties and all-female main casting, bronies are attracted to the new show by its good animation, acting, writing, and humor.

Having once been on the outside, bronies can love and tolerate others until they themselves become bronies. However, haters gonna hate— most likely due to the fact that they have a masculinity inferiority complex, where they believe that if they watched My Little Pony, others like them will label them as an effeminate freak.”

This Kickstarter’s success shows how many bronies really do feel judged. BronyCon is now the 4th-most funded film of all time on Kickstarter. The movie started with a goal of $60,000, but it’s raised over $265,000. There’s almost 700 comments and almost 2,000 individual donations; four people have given $10,000. John de Lancie (Q from Star Trek) is one of the executive producers. I wonder how many other celebrities are closeted bronies? (Deadline: June 10, 2:59 p.m.)

On a much more serious and consequential topic, the documentary Shame on America is raising funds on Kickstarter for a film about our returning veterans. “On any given night not far from your front door there are upwards of 75,000 veterans trying to survive the brutal conditions of the streets,” reads the Kickstarter pitch. “The VA has seen the backlog of disability claims increase to 864,000 with the majority suffering from PTSD. Find out how and why this is happening in one of the wealthiest countries in the world.” Aaron Lewis, the lead singer of Staind, is a co-producer; David Ellefson, the bassist and founding member of Megadeath will narrate, and the film is being created and directed by filmmaker Fran Strine. So far they’ve gone well over their goal and raised more than $50,000 after a pledged goal of $35,560. The project still has 15 days to go before its time is up. (Deadline: June 24, 7:21 a.m.)


Many people have pitched their Ernie-Pyle-style traveling diary projects, and The Real East Coast is one of them. This project involves the creator walking from Orlando, FL to Bangor, ME, and back again. “I will conduct short interviews with the people I meet, and I will attend the rare events about which most tourists never hear. I will create at the end of each day both a written and a video blog, both of which I will broadcast on my YouTube and Google+ account,” reads the Kickstarter. The goal of $4,000 is modest enough, but I just don’t see people feeling inspired enough to contribute, as the idea is vaguely described and there’s no real explanation for donors about what to expect. (Deadline: July 30, 10:30 a.m.)

“What really scares us in the middle of the night? Do you believe in the spirit world?” These are the questions being asked by SURGE Paranormal Group in the Kickstarter trailer for a documentary which will investigate three supposedly haunted locations to see if there is any truth to the claims. Some of the documentary crew believes in ghosts, some don’t, and others are unsure. This combination is meant to increase the effectiveness of this ghost-busting venture, but it hasn’t done much to get the money flowing. With a week left to go, SURGE has only raised $3 towards its $9,200 goal. (Deadline: June 15, 10:28 p.m.)

Out of Time

Former BBC news reporter Manoush Zomorodi is on Kickstarter raising money for her ebook, Camera Ready, a guide that will explain how to present ideas through video. “After years of helping aspiring journalists, nonprofit organizations, and others make non-crappy and more informative videos, I’ve decided to up the ante and create an entire book about making non-crappy and more informative videos!” writes Zomorodi in her pitch. Chapters include “The Top Ten On-Camera Mistakes,” “Superficial Stuff: Why You Should Care,” and “It’s In The Angles.” With just three days to go, Camera Ready is close to the finish line; the project has raised about $3,800 towards the $5,000 goal.

Alysia Santo is a former assistant editor at CJR.