Flex Is Kings takes place in the Brooklyn neighborhood of East
New York, where high crime rates and diminished opportunities have left the
young men growing into adulthood few choices and fewer resources, pushing so
many to lives dependent on crime and gangs.
Yet there is a large and growing group resisting the notion that their
prospects are limited to a powerless existence.
On these streets a dance community rose, eager for an avenue of
expression and determined to create a positive force in their neighborhood. “Flex” is the name of the dance style – it
involves dance battle competitions that are at once flights of fancy as well as
poetic evocations of the streets – gun battles, romantic interludes, run-ins
with authorities. The film is structured around a season of Battlefest, the
central organizing event of the Flex movement, and focuses on some of the community’s
Our three main characters
represent different sides of a common struggle.
Flizzo, an unconventional dancer and
charismatic showman, brought the house down and cemented his place in the Flex
community when a zebra finch flew from his mouth for a “punchline” during a
show. His attempts to juggle dancing with a new baby and dismal job market cast
doubts on the practicality of continuing his craft and resisting his old ways
as a member of the Bloods, the life he left behind to devote himself to dance.
Jay Donn, the individualist auteur,
faces frustration after competing on America’s Best Dance Crew and returning to
Brooklyn to find higher status with no real reward. Jay gets a paying job in a
more traditional baroque-modern dance company that exposes him to new
possibilities as he travels to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival to star in a new
adaptation of Pinocchio.
Reem, the creator and organizer of Battlefest, the ultimate DIY
dance showcase in Brooklyn, is a budding mogul. He struggles to do everything
on his own while managing the dancers and coaching them to capitalize on their
skills in the professional world. Reem
is a consistent and steadfast force and serves as a backbone to the community
and the film.
Flex Is Kings will have its world premiere at a
top-tier US festival this spring. We are seeking financial support of $30k to
complete necessary finishing work on the film in order for it to be seen by an
$21,000 for online editing – by February 25th: Goldcrest, a top-level postproduction facility in New
York City, has submitted a bid (color correction, sound mix, master print)
that totals $40k. Goldcrest fully supports the project and has generously
offered us a discount of $19k if we are able to pay up front.
$6,000 for original music – by June 1st: The score of a dance film has to be exceptional and we
have had the privilege of working with composers up to the task. For the completion of the score, we need
to raise $6k.
$3,000 for deliverables – by April 1st: This is the final step that
will provide us with a hi-definition master of the completed film, ready
PRODUCTION TO POST-PRODUCTION
When we began filming in 2010, we had no budget and only the
beginnings of access into the fascinating world of “Flex.” What we did have was a dedicated group of
talented filmmakers willing to devote their time, their expertise, and
essentially their lives to the making of this film. Over the course of two years we were able to
gain the trust of an entire neighborhood and capture the moments of intense
beauty and drama that unfolded within it.
In April 2012, we ran a successful Kickstarter campaign and exceeded our
goal, raising $45k with 647 backers, proving that we have an international
audience. This budget allowed us to edit the film, recoup a portion of the
production costs, build a website, and pay our composers a portion of their
Disciplines: Dance, Film/Video