Daniel Stern Kickstarter Guy Raised $12K Before Joke Spin Doctors Biopic Failed
"My boss even endorsed me taking a leave of absence."
It’s with a certain heaviness of heart and tongue in cheek that we mourn the passing of what may have been the greatest fake Kickstarter project to have ever existed. Last month, we discovered Daniel Nadolny’s joke attempt at raising $5 million so that he could make a Spin Doctors film starring Home Alone bad guy Daniel Stern as singer Chris Barron. The entire idea stemmed from the fact that the two look similar, but the presentation was perfectly offhand: “There are missing biopics for both the Spin Doctors and the actor Daniel Stern. This project covers both.”
Well, like Björk’s failed Biophilia Education Program before it, Nadolny’s dream died on the vine last week. Unlike the Icelandic art-house queen, however, the humble Atlanta resident never actually believed he’d raise the ridiculous amount of money he was asking for (we can’t all be Amanda Palmer, after all). And to be fair, he did fairly well considering his complete lack of notoriety and sincerity. Shortly after our article went live, Nadolny’s project experienced a modest bump, and in the final hours, he broke $12,000. SPIN caught up with the would-be director to find out what happened.
Well, how do you feel?
Good, really good. I honestly didn’t think Kickstarter would even approve the project, so when it started making serious rounds, it felt like I was playing with house money. Laugh, and a very demented slice of the population laughs with you.
Where in the world did that $12,000 come from?
Some true believers, I tell you what. To be fair, $10,000 came from one guy and in the waning hours of the project. Someone named Scott Interrante. According to Google, he’s either a music writer or a magician. I truly have no idea who he is — he’s my pledge angel. My really good friend Dave donated a whole dollar, the sonuvabitch.
Did you ever kinda wish it would actually get funded?
Definitely. After SPIN initially reported on it, a friend asked, “Seriously, what if you hit the goal? You’re fucked.” I said, “If by ‘fucked’ you actually mean ‘green-lighted to have the adventure of a lifetime.'” I meant that. My boss even endorsed me taking a leave of absence to work on the film, had it been funded.
Who are you anyway? Any experience with comedy or music?
I’m an editor for two medical journals published by a major nonprofit, and I play guitar in a [pretty awesome] doom metal outfit called Wizard Smoke. Big fan of writing and recording music, the serious and the not-so-serious. I contributed to Chunklet’s most recently published book and have written a thing or two for Creative Loafing Atlanta. I have a pathological need to pun.
What have you learned from this experience?
That absurdity has value — at least $12,000 worth. And to be careful with the internet. One day, you’re watching Home Alone on the couch. The next day, your name is etched across the cybersphere with Daniel Stern and the fucking Spin Doctors.
Speaking of, final thoughts on the Spin Doctors?
Great musicians who wrote great pop songs that inarguably kick the shit out of what passes for pop music today.
Inarguably? You’re being nice, right?
In regards to what makes it onto the radio, yes, inarguably. “Two Princes” was every bit as inescapable in 1993 as that fucking One Direction song or “Call Me Maybe” is today. Listen to the guitar solo on that song. Nobody in mainstream radio has that kind of command over their instrument today. No one even bothers. I really, truly liked them. And I really, truly have no idea what happened to them.