Ambitious Star Wars fan film is the crowdfunding campaign you're looking for

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Feb 20, 2015, 7:25 PM EST (Updated)

Though Disney is doing a good job of ramping up development on a bunch of Star Wars films, it doesn’t mean there’s not a bit of room left for some indie entries.

Filmmaker and writer Richard Lowry (Monarch of the Moon) has kicked off a crowdfunding campaign aiming to back his proposed Star Wars fan film Rise of the Empire, which promises to tell an original story starring new characters within the Star Wars universe. Lowry has proposed a 20-minute short that will feature studio-caliber production, along with throwback effects akin to the practical effects and miniatures fans loved from the original trilogy.

Lowry reportedly plans to shoot the film on 35mm with Panavision cameras, to give it that authentic vintage look, and they plan to shoot much of it in Death Valley to double for a more alien setting. The plot will follow young Jedi warriors on the verge of leading an uprising who are hunted by the Empire. They’ve raised just over $2,000 of a $50,000 goal — but they’ve only just launched, so there are still a few weeks left to score some dough.

OK, there are a lot of fan films and Kickstarter campaigns out there. But one thing that makes the project even more intriguing is the behind-the-scenes talent Lowry has assembled to help him. There’s TRON’s director of photography, Bruce Logan, who also worked as an effects artist on the original Star Wars and 2001: A Space Odyssey; art director Barry Jackson (Titan A.E., The Nightmare Before Christmas), prosthetics guru Pepe Mora (Games of Thrones, Cloud Atlas) and wardrobe designer Hermineh Victoryan (Enchanted). Not a bad crew for a fan film.

Would you like to see this one finished? Enough to kick in some cash as a backer?

(Via Kickstarter)