Pushing Daisies

“Yeah, yeah, a Veronica Mars movie is getting made. That’s nice and all, but what about a Pushing Daisies movie?” is hopefully what some of you thought after Mars creator Rob Thomas reached his Kickstarter quota. Thomas’s campaign has almost raised over double its $2m required, and it’ll make even more money before its 30 days are up. You know what Rob Thomas should do with some of that spare change? Give it to Bryan Fuller to make a Pushing Daisies movie.

Who wouldn’t want to do that?

Based on what a Pushing Daisies movie would need to come to fruition, that million or so would come in handy. We recently spoke with the show’s creator, Bryan Fuller, about what it would take to make this film happen via crowdfunding. It’s still only a possibility, but Fuller has the makings of a plan that comes complete with some serious challenges and a directorial ally.

After this week, what are your thoughts on Kickstarter?

I think it’s so fantastic. My hat is off to Rob Thomas and Kristen Bell for pulling that off. I have so many questions. I would love to revisit both Wonderfalls and Pushing Daisies, because they were very positive creative experiences for me. I had actually started writing a Pushing Daisies film, and I had the first act of it. I thought it was my pallet cleanser after writing, for the better part of the year now, about really, really dark material.

What kind of budget do you think you’d need for Daisies?

Well, I definitely want to have the conversations with the studio. It would need a bigger budget than Veronica Mars, because that’s a style of noir that is the gravy for the storytelling. You have the wonderful dialog, fantastic cast, and moody cinema that gives you noir.

With Pushing Daisies, we had to build a world. We have to build the pie hole, visual effects, have zombie makeup, and there’s a lot more production elements involved. We made the one-hour pilot for $6 million. Every [other] episode was about $3m to make for the series. To do a movie, I believe we would need between $10-15 million to do it, and that’s harder to ask for than what Veronica Mars is asking for.

They can make a fantastic movie that exists in their world which is true to the spirit of their television show, as well as bringing in film quality storytelling with $5 million. What is their total now?

Nearly $4 million.

So that’s the big distinction between them [and us]. When that happened the cast and everyone was like, “We’re totally in.”

I emailed Barry Sonnenfeld first, asking, “Would you direct it?” He said, “Well, let’s go to the studio first.” [Laughs] Yeah, let’s do this one step at a time. I mean, with Veronica Mars they laid out their plan, had all their ducks in a row, and knew what they were doing by the time they hit Kickstarter. I have a lot of catchup to do to see what is possible for Pushing Daisies, what the studio involvement would be, and what the studio’s appetite would be. I have a lot to learn from Rob Thomas on how they pulled it off, and to see if I can do the same with Pushing Daisies.

I would love to return to that world. It’s a very happy place for me. I crammed that show with so many things I love, from dogs to pies to zombies to Kristin Chenoweth. When I was writing Hannibal, I had nowhere to go to give me light. When I was working on Pushing Daisies, if it ever got tough, I was surrounded by things that could make me smile.

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So if you’ve got $10m – $15m and Disney’s blessing lying around, please let Fuller and the rest of us know.

Check back soon for more news from Fuller and our full interview discussing his work on Hannibal.


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