Three young entrepreneurs make film history

It’s an ambitious plan. The three budding film-makers have unearthed a forgotten novel by Jules Verne, the author behind huge Hollywood successes Journey to the Centre of the Earth and Around the World in Eighty Days, and aim to raise the funds through this scheme to make the movie.

“People can buy a credit at the end of the film for £1,” says the 17-year-old Bliss. “Corporates can also include a logo for £10. It’s got novelty appeal more than anything else but it’s a great way to raise money and generate publicity for the film.”

The film, Dardentor, will be based on Verne’s Clovis Dardentor, the story of two best friends who befriend a heirless billionaire. On a holiday with their new friend, the wealthy gentleman announces that he will leave his entire fortune to the boy who saves his life. The film then follows the antics of the pair, who attempt to put the wealthy gentleman in life-endangering situations in order to rescue him.

Bliss has budgeted £1m for the development, production, filming and release of the film but the trio have only raised £4,000 so far. It’s early days: was only launched in March. Plus, the media exposure has led to a private investor donating £100,000 to the cause. “He loved the idea,” says Bliss. “He’d seen a piece on us in a newspaper and contacted us.”

But the boys have also got some others ideas in the pipeline to secure funding. “We’ve got a mansion that we’re allowed to film in,” says Bliss. “We’re planning to offer the name of the mansion up for sale to the highest bidder.” Bliss also suggests a similar deal for a yacht, which is also featured in the tale.

And there’s been minimum outlay so far. “We’re working on this project unpaid,” says Bliss. “And the novel is over 100 years old and Verne is long-dead so it’s in the public domain – there’s no licensing fee to pay.” Look out for Dardentor at film festivals and independent cinemas near you. Though, if the money continues trickling in at this snail’s pace, you might have to wait five years or so…

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