Paul and I have been in a holding pattern for months now, waiting to hear word on not one, not two, not three, but FOUR different projects – three pilots and a feature. What’s interesting is that, in all four cases, the scripts are with someone(s) who likes them and has expressed interest in seeing them produced.  We’ve received very positive word and been told that a decision is imminent.  That was months ago and we’re still waiting.

We can’t be too upset because no one has passed.  And we can’t be too happy because we’ve yet to be given a green light.  We CAN, however, be cautiously optimistic.  The network loved the changes we made to the urban fantasy pilot and it has been bumped up the chain of command.  The other network loves the Dark Matter pilot, we have the other players in place, and word is imminent (yesterday according to one source).  Yet another network loves that non-genre pilot, loved the game plan I talked them through a couple of weeks ago, and just (today) requested a written document outlining our plans for the show’s first two seasons.  And a production company loves the premise of the horror script and have been looking do something very similar for a while now.  It seems as though we’re close…

Of course, that’s how I felt in January.  Yep.  I remember thinking: “Any day now…”.

Realistically, it SHOULD be any day now.  But if it’s not, Paul and I have travel plans to L.A. for some meet and greets, while Ivon and I have plans to go the Kickstarter route and simply shoot the horror film ourselves with some old Stargate friends.  In an ideal scenario, we could fund the movie through crowd sourcing and deferred payments, produce it, land a distributor, then pay everyone back with the profits. However, according to Ivon, I think this runs counter to Kickstarter rules.  If we want to go through Kickstarter, we should instead be offering investors alternate rewards like signed scripts, set visits, perhaps a cameo as a colorful victim (Disembowelment or defenestration?  YOU decide!).

Anyway, Ivon have discussed the possibility off and on over the past couple of months.  And, the other day, my buddy Cas mentioned a Kickstarter project he’s involved with – an SF web series its creators have dubbed “The Office in space”. Intrigued, I headed over to Kickstarter and checked out their project – along with several others that I thought I’d bring to your attention…



An SF web series – “The Office in space” – headlined by Babylon 5’s Claudia Christian and my friend, Cas Anvar.




Kill All Monsters: Ruins of Paris is the printed first volume of the hit webcomic about monsters and the giant robots that kill them.

Kickstarter: kill-all-monsters-volume-1-ruins-of-paris



Cthulhu eats your childhood in this Lovecraftian spin on classic children’s literature. What can a cthulhupillar eat in a week?

Kickstarter: the-very-hungry-cthulhupillar


1Benson Bye is a heart warming short film about a man with autism who must transfer to a new facility leaving his younger sister behind.

Kickstarter: benson-bye


1An American family spends a month in a 260-square-foot Tokyo apartment in this humorous food and travel memoir.

Kickstarter: Pretty Good Number One: An American Family Eats Tokyo


This project is a labor of love to bring the unique work of Henry Kuttner to a new generation of readers.

Kickstarter: The Hogben Chronicles of Henry Kuttner

So, hey, how did you all do with the Puerco Pibil recipe?  Mine was a resounding success…

1Big, bold, delicious flavors.  I wonder how it would work using an even more marbled cut like, say, the pork belly?

How’d you all do?

Next up = Shiny’s sancocho!

Mince a little garlic (2 cloves), onions (1/4 cup chopped), parsley and devil weed aka cilantro and roast in a sauce pan with a little olive oil; toss in slices of polska kielbasa (enough for 2 servings) and add some white pepper and paprika. If you have shrimp, toss them in now.

Once the bold sausage oils have mingled with the gentle olive oils and the onions are sweated you can pour in a can of plain ol’ Campbell’s chicken soup (low salt) and yes, a can of water (see? I know it’s low rent but it is tasty).

Stir that up and let it simmer for a few minutes, then add: 1/2 cup of gnocchi, 1/2 cup of cabbage, and a firm ripe plantain cut into medallions; the plaintain should be a nice yellow color, not too dry but not so ripe that it’s mushy. Toss in a 1/2 cup of chickpeas or sweet peas if you prefer; the bean of your choice.

Let it simmer until the plantain turns a bright pretty deep yellow and the gnocchi are nice and fat, prolly another 5 to 10 minutes.

Serve with Whole Wheat Grilled Cheese sandwiches, made with lots of butter and Gouda cheese.

34 thoughts on “May 9, 2013: Kickstarter round-up! Recipe round-up!

  1. Hello Joe, juste wanted to share this article with you. I know you re found of those 😉 Its about some “Trucks” restaurant in Montreal:

    Bouffe de rue : Montréal présente neuf sites
    les Montréalais pourront s’alimenter auprès de 17 camions qui se stationneront dans neuf sites différents

    Let me know if you try some of those, i d be happy to join on a week end!

    take care

  2. It would be nice to see Cas along with Claudia at Phoenix Comicon to talk about Nobility.

  3. ah. So that’s what Claudia has been up to… I haven’t seen her in over a decade! ..yeah…Nothing says SCI-FI “FAN” like sharing a cab to a dance club with a B-5 Actor on both sides of you AND Claudia sitting across ALL of our laps! — good times…

    Hey Joe! Any chance of you hopping a Red-eye to Ottawa for Our “COMIC-CON” this weekend?? — oh. And the big “STAR WARS” Exhibition opens tomorrow too!

  4. Good luck with the projects Joe. By the sound of things it could be like when you’re waiting for a bus – four come along at once! But I’m sure you’d be able to cope.

    (BTW, thanks for sorting out the post yesterday!)

  5. Kickstarter is really there for “selling stuff” to raise money (usually selling stuff that doesn’t exist until it is funded so they can make the stuff they’re selling). It’s not really supposed to be used for investment where investors expect a financial return. There are huge regulatory barriers stopping companies from issuing stock, securities, bonds, etc.

    Here’s an interesting writeup on how projects perform on Kickstarter:

    I’m afraid I’ve been a bit slack when it comes to trying these recipes. I had some friends around for Cinco de Mayo on the weekend so it would have been a perfect time to make Puerco Pibil. Unfortunately I’d already organised ingredients and, as I’d already majorly overcatered, I didn’t think I should add another dish! As an official Mexican food addict I’ll definitely be trying it, though!

  6. Hi Joe, yes selling shares in a projects on Kickstarter is against the rules as it violate some US laws

    Several UK base crowdsourcing sites offer capabilities of selling shares in a company, with an offer of dividend. So maybe get an lawyer to look at using a UK base site to host the campaign and sale shares.

    I am sure they be happy to accept a high profile film project, you could probably negotiate a good deal with one of them.

    All offer projects the right to sell equity in a project as well as offering rewards.

    I have been eager to invest in a few films or game projects, sadly none that I have been interested in have come up yet on the sites I look at yet.
    I would love to invest in funding a Dark Matter pilot. We need a space opera back on our screens.

  7. And now I see where they are talking again about charging for certain youtube videos. I thought all the adverts(annoying) were paying for that.. I guess if money is to be made, someone will find a way. I have learned many how- to’s from u tube. Best of luck and fingers crossed and hope you get that phone call soon. But a road trip sounds fun also. The food dish picture does look good also. Have a great day!!

  8. As a longtime Lovecraft fan, and as a mother who read the original caterpillar story an untold number of times, “Cthulupillar” made me snarf my drink! 🙂 Sending positive vibes for all your projects, and for your pooch’s poor foot…

  9. re: puerco pibil

    My husband said to tell das she rocks, two thumbs up. I protested that I was the one who made the pork. He amended it to “three thumbs up, even my wife made it awesome”.

    It was wonderful, and had a little bit of that pulled pork consistency. This recipe and this cut of meat is going on a permanent rotation around here.

    I think the color difference is from not obtaining the first ingredient. That’s a common food dye so it’s going to be a significant color difference. I also downgraded to jalapenos for the kiddos.
    I’m very happy with how much value we got out of this cut. This also went out in packed lunches today and there’s still a bunch left and a jar of lard in the fridge and oh, won’t the kids at school be jealous when my son’s eating fresh cracklin’s in front of them during lunch today.

  10. Joey, can I plug a Kickstarter project? Not mine, but that of a couple gals over on the Benbo: FLESH OF WHITE: Surviving Albinism in Tanzania, by Erica J. Heflin and Amanda Rachels. I believe I mentioned it here before, but they’re now working on the second issue.

    Issue one:

    Issue two:

    The first issue is exceptionally done – the art, the quality of the book itself, and the little added bonuses for the level I pledged. I am supporting this one in hopes that it will bring more awareness to the plight of people with albinism in Tanzania, and surrounding countries, where they’re literally being butchered alive for their body parts. Often young children are the victims. Sadly, however, the rest of the world doesn’t seem to care all that much, just like it never seems to care about anything that happens in Africa, so I am very proud of these two young ladies for doing something to help expose what’s happening over there. It is a worthy project, imho.


  11. Joey – A more marbled cut will probably make the meat more moist, whereas the shoulder or loin may ‘dry’ a little during the slow roasting process. However, the method of cooking does allow for a tougher, less marbled cut to be used because no matter what, it should come up fork-tender.

    Now that you’ve tried a simplified version of the dish, why not go for the ‘real’ thing – the traditional cochinita pibil! From wiki:

    Cochinita means baby pig, so true cochinita pibil involves roasting a whole suckling pig. Alternatively, pork shoulder (butt roast), or pork loin is used in many recipes. The high acid content of the marinade and the slow cooking time tenderizes the meat, allowing otherwise tough pieces of meat to be used. The Yucatecan recipes always employ the juice of Seville or bitter oranges for marinating. In areas where bitter oranges are not common, juice of sweet oranges combined with lemons, limes, or vinegar are employed to approximate the effect of the bitter orange on the meat. Another important ingredient in all pibil recipes is achiote (annatto), which gives the meat its characteristic color and adds to flavor.

    Traditionally, cochinita pibil was buried in a pit with a fire at the bottom to roast it. The Mayan word pibil means “buried”.

    So get diggin’, Joey!! It’s piggy roast time! 😀

    Also – did you notice that the aroma of this dish while cooking was something akin to Windex? At least that’s how it smells to me.


  12. Joe – I saw this last night and immediately thought of you when he got to the dessert thing. Please tell me that you’re not ‘the whole other kind of guy who’s just all about the dessert’… 😆

    This whole thing had me in stitches!!


  13. I served the puerco with sides of refried beans, saffron rice, and tortilla chips for Cinco de Mayo! It was fantastic, my entire family said that it’s a keeper recipe. My Dad especially really, really liked it.

    P.S.: I think your Urban Fantasy might have been bumped up and will most likely get greenlighted because maybe the studio wants to compete with Syfy’s new show DEFIANCE. The fact that DEFIANCE has been such a big hit so far would maybe like a fire under the execs’ butts for you. I really do think DEFIANCE got the green because Falling Skies has done so outstandingly well for TNT.

  14. “(Disembowelment or defenestration? YOU decide!).”

    If the budget allows, can we have both?! 🙂

    Now that I’ve heard how extra good it is, I feel even worse about not making the Pibil. I’ll keep it in mind though for the future.

  15. I noticed some of the top tier rewards for the Veronica Mars thing involved naming a character, appearing as extras in the background, having your name mentioned, a speaking role even if its small. Those kinds of things would be good if you have a good idea in your hands.

    Certainly I’m sure it wouldn’t be much of a hassle for anyone writing something to just alter a characters name even if its just a minor one, or having random people sat/stood in the background for a scene, or someone having a few lines here and there.

    All this is clearly done in good faith on the lines of get your butt down to where we’re filming, we won’t pay for your accommodation or expenses, but we’l give you what you’ve pledged for.

    I think if anything you’l have a lot of ideas if you, or anyone wanted to go along the kickstarter route. Certainly a bottom tier reward option such as a copy of the pilot/movie on DVD or Blu Ray. Or a mention in the credits(Name) would be an easy thing for anyone to do.

  16. Dang it, Joe! You had to to the food review on the day I had to drive to pick up my daughter at college. So here it is a little late:

    Puerco Pibil review:

    1. Gathering the ingredients: It was a little problematic. I couldn’t get the adobo (or achiote paste) so I substituted a powdered spice blend from Goya that had SOME (but not much) adobo. And no banana leaves but the dutch oven worked just fine. I have since located a Mexican grocery store not too far away so next time I should be able to be more authentic.

    2. Preparation: I nearly did myself severe bodily harm with this one. I was carefully scraping the seeds and veins out of the habenero pepper on a piece of plastic wrap while wearing gloves when a small fleck of pepper flew into the air.. and into my eye! After many minutes of eyewash, all was well and I got everything into the blender. It did take a while to get the habenero thoroughly blended with the liquid ingredients. My pork shoulder was a little fatty, so I had to trim it a bit.

    3. Cooking: Got everything into the dutch oven and let it stand for an hour before putting it into the oven to kind of let the liquid soak into the meat, then roasted it. I made 2.5 lbs, so it was done in 3 hours.

    4. The finished product: Holy cow this is hot! I found the heat a little overwhelming when I ate the meat alone, but it was better when I ate it with rice and mango. And the cold sake was the perfect accompaniment! Beer would be good, too. My son, who also enjoys spicy food, liked it very much, but also noted the heat – and that it got hotter as it stood in the refrigerator. The pork shoulder was very moist.

    5. I will definitely make this one again; one of those recipes you make on the weekend or a day off and then enjoy the leftovers in various forms for the rest of the week. Tacos would be really good with this inside. I’m debating whether to substitute a jalapeno next time, or to try the habenero again and hope that the achiote paste subdues the heat.

    How was the heat level for those of you that found all the ingredients?

    @Joe and das: does the adobo/achiote temper the habenero? And, no, das, it didn’t smell like Windex. But maybe it will when I have the full achiote load the next time I make it. 😉

  17. Some projects can come up with Kickstarter-style perks more easily than others. When Kickstarter was pondered for the browser game I was working on, there were statue likenesses, in-game perks and recognition, hundreds of character names, thousands of region names, and even more city names that could be customized however an investor liked. For projects without many customize-able features, the motivation for smaller contributions would have to entirely be voting with your dollars for a project to happen.

  18. @ Sparrowhawk – I don’t think the achiote tempers the heat. I just think that the heat of the pepper varies naturally. I’ve never had trouble with the heat using the amount recommended in the recipe…so maybe you just got superhot habenaros. I believe a pepper’s heat is influenced by how old it is, as well as the soil and climate they’ve been grown in, even within a particular variety. Young peppers have more heat than old ones…or is it the other way round?

    What the achiote does do is give the dish a very unique flavor, one you’ve probably never tasted before. The next time you make it be sure to use all whole spices (inc. the achiote – no paste!) and use a spice-dedicated coffee bean-type grinder to grind them up (otherwise, if you use your regular coffee bean grinder your coffee will forever afterwards taste like achiote). The use of freshly ground whole spices really does make this dish. And the banana leaves…don’t forget the banana leaves! 😉 (This is where the internet does come in handy – you can easily order the achiote seeds on-line…probably even from Amazon.)

    Now I wanna make it again. It’s been a while, and the past couple months we’ve been eating out so much (either at restaurants or with family and/or friends) that I just haven’t felt like making a ‘big’ meal. But now I have a hankerin’ for this stuff. 🙂 I’m wondering if I should go for the more traditional style, I might even see if I can find bitter oranges somewhere…oh, lookie! I can!

    Now…to dig a hole…


  19. And I just got a chuck roast out of 48 hours of sous vide, which makes it about like a prime rib ‘cept better, and those pig’s feet are just now defrosted (now to figure out how to cook them), so I’m just swimming in good eatin’ around here.

  20. Hi Joe,
    The recipe was a bit demanding, not that it was too difficult to cook but I do not have spice grinder so I had to use my Thai pestol and morter. After an hour of pounding to get the seeds in to a nice powder, I woke up the next day with reaggravated tendentious (so much for the tiny violin concerto). The one thing I did not get were the Banana leaves, but this is Chicago and not Minneapolis. So, I used my big pot and stuck it in the oven at 325. After I did that I reread the recipe and it said slow cooking. My reaction, “Crock Pot!” The smell while it was cooking was fabulous. I do have one question, since I did not use banana leaves, would that explain the left over liquid in the pot? I see with your picture there appears to have a minimal amount. I still think it tastes great. Just when I thought it was not that spice, I could feel the sweat come. I did use Pork loin and it was drier than expected but with the left over juices and pulling, or mashing the chunks, the pork it turns out just fine. Should I not have used a lid?

    I was thinking of side and I thought grilled potato with a little juice or a corn and black bean salad (red pepper, onion, perhaps some artichoke heart and some cilantro). I enjoyed it (will be enjoying it for some time).
    In reading some the other results I think this meat would be great in a soft shell and some sour cream.

    Thanks for sharing Das

    Braking out the three hole punch and setting it in my Betty Crocker. (2 for 2)

  21. Realistically, it SHOULD be any day now.

    Here’s hoping!


    So that’s what Eric Carle has been to since my kids were toddlers…nice to know he’s trying new things…

    On the Perco Pibil, I’ve made it before (and enjoyed it), but I’ll be making it tomorrow…I’ve been too busy with work, the Corvette transmission, Jackie’s new car, and fiberglassing on the airplane to do much else.

    I’ll see if I can make Shiny’s sancocho on Sunday or Monday, the rest of the week is too crazy otherwise.

  22. Quite a lot of renewals today, Once Upon a Time got a third season even. Then of course you have Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, looks like Ming Na landed a quality role after SGU lol

    Just goes to say Joe, SGU had a fantastic cast, and all the worthwhile members have landed decent roles elsewhere afterwards. The show being cancelled essentially had no effect on the careers of many, as it was a great show.

  23. Hi Joe

    I think Kickstarter sounds like an awesome idea for the Horror film. I don’t know all of the rules regarding Kickstarter but I did see this today:

    Zach Braff defending using Kickstarter to fund his new film. He’s using it to fund part of it. I don’t see anything wrong with it at all.

    Count me in! I would love to be disemboweled in your film. You do re-embowel don’t you? I’ve even got my own producer credit on IMDB.

    Other ideas – you could have a competition on your blog to design the movie poster. I would love to enter that. Kickstarter Rewards could include DVDs, characters named after backers, signed props, Ivon (just kidding 😉 )

    Have you budgeted yet? That’s important. It’s difficult to know how successful a crowd-sourced project would be. Some people might say they’ll only fund a Stargate project, but I think you’ll find enough of us that would get behind you and Ivon.

    Best wishes for all of the projects with Paul. Could you fit them all in if all projects got a green light?


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