Hazing: How Badly Do You Want In?

"Hazing: How Badly Do You Want In?" will be a 60-minute documentary film that explores the issue of hazing in American culture.
Byron Hurt
Newark, New Jersey
United States
1 Team Member
Hazing" (A Message from the Filmmaker)

All over the country, people have been asking me, "So, Byron, what's your next film going to be about?" The truth is, I have a long list of ideas for films that I'd LOVE to make, but after consulting with my closest friends and advisers, and giving it some careful thought, I've finally decided that my next film will explore the topic of hazing in American culture.

"Hazing" a new film in development by Byron Hurt

In order to bring Hazing to life I need to raise $60,000 in 60 days for the film's development phase.

Why This Topic?

I have long wanted to make a documentary about this subject but never felt courageous enough to address it. This is a sensitive and controversial topic. However, after I learned about the tragic death of Robert Champion (below) - the Florida A&M University band member who, in November 2012, was tragically killed by his fellow band members because of a traditional hazing ritual - I felt compelled to illuminate this issue in a documentary film.

Robert Champion (from Google Images)

Contributors to the development phase of the Hazing project would be supporting a seminal film about the hotly debated topic of hazing in fraternities and sororities, clubs, sports teams, marching bands, military, etc. By supporting this Indiegogo campaign, your dollars will allow me to:

  • Immediately hire a top-notch production crew and a support staff,
  • Pay for production equipment rentals and production insurance,
  • Hire an excellent, experienced editor, and
  • Create a high quality trailer to heighten awareness and to raise additional funding for the other phases of the project.

As a filmmaker who is a fraternity member (I am a proud member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Incorporated) and someone who has been hazed (that's me below) and has hazed young men, I feel uniquely qualified to make this film. As I have done with all my other work, I will approach this subject with sensitivity and care. This documentary will be thoroughly researched and the story will be well told, but only if I can count on you to help me get it done.

I plan to break new ground with this project. I also expect this film to serve as a teaching tool for those who want to preserve the rite of passage experience but who also want to eliminate some of the more dangerous and harmful aspects of hazing.

A man being paddled (from Goggle Images).

Why Crowdfunding?

Making films is a very costly endeavor. For past films, I have received generous support from funders such as ITVS, The Ford Foundation, the National Black Programming Consortium, and others, but I have always needed to raise additional monies. Most independent filmmakers will tell you that crowdfunding platforms like Indiegogo help us tell our stories and share them with the world.

As some may remember, my team and I exceeded our last fundraising goal in 2011 via a crowdfunding campaign. That campaign was crucial to the success of Soul Food Junkies, which went on to become an award-winning documentary film that was televised nationally.

Previously, I have counted on community support to complete my documentaries I Am a Man: Black Masculinity in America and Hip-Hop: Beyond Beats and Rhymes. I hope I can count on you again and that my body of work (see below) gives you confidence that Hazing will be another thought-provoking, important film.

Every Dollar Matters!

Raising $60,000 in 60 days is a big "ask" yet I'm only asking for a portion of what it would take to deliver an excellent film. So no contribution is too small and every single dollar counts towards meeting and hopefully exceeding our $60,000 goal. If you help make this campaign a successful one, I promise to make you a proud contributor.

In exchange for your contribution, you'll get some cool perks in return. See what we're offering for your much needed dollars in the "Perks" section (right).

Other Ways You Can Help

This is a bold and ambitious fundraiser for a bold and ambitious film. But if you cannot contribute at this time, you can help by spreading the word. Word of mouth is really important if we're going to be successful! Please tell your family, friends, co-workers, colleagues, and associates about Hazing and our goal to raise $60,000 in 60 days. That would be a HUGE help!

Thank you for taking the time to WATCH THE VIDEO and for reading my statement.  My team and I will be happy to answer any questions you may have. Please contact us on Facebook and Twitter, or via email at info@bhurt.com.

As always, thank you for your support.



About Byron Hurt

Byron Hurt is an award-winning documentary filmmaker, published writer, anti-sexist activist, and lecturer. He is also the former host of the Emmy-nominated series, REEL WORKS with BYRON HURT. His documentary, Hip-Hop: Beyond Beats and Rhymes, premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and was later broadcast on the PBS series Independent Lens.

In 2010, MSNBC's TheGrio.com named Hip-Hop: Beyond Beats and Rhymes one of the "Top 10 Most Important African-American Themed Films of the Decade." The Independent named him one of the "Top 10 Filmmakers to Watch" in 2011.

His writings have been published in several anthologies, including Michael Eric Dyson’s “Know What I Mean?” Kevin Powell’s “The Black Male Handbook,” and Shira Tarrant’s “Men Speak Out.” Hurt as also been featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Los Angeles Times, O Magazine, Mother Jones, the Atlanta Journal Constitution, The Huffington Post, The Philadelphia Tribune, The Final Call, and AllHipHop.com.  He has also appeared on NPR, CNN, Access Hollywood, MTV, BET, ABC News World Tonight, HuffPost Live, Our World with Black Enterprise, C-Span, and many other outlets.

Byron Hurt's current film, Soul Food Junkies, was completed in 2012 and made its national television premiere on PBS’ Emmy award-winning series, Independent Lens, in January 2013.   Soul Food Junkies won CNN Best Documentary at the American Black Film Festival and Best Documentary at the Urbanworld Film Festival in New York City. It is currently touring nationwide.

Learn more at www.BHurt.com. Learn more about Soul Food Junkies at www.itvs.org/films/soul-food-junkies. Hurt is available for speaking engagements and screening talk-backs. Contact Kevin MacRae at kmacrae@macraespeakers.com. Public relations and media inquiries are directed to AKILA WORKSONGS, Inc. at 718.756.8501 or pr@akilaworksongs.com.


Find This Campaign On
raised by 311 people in 2 months
33% funded
No time left
$60,000 USD goal
Flexible Funding This campaign has ended and will receive all funds raised.
Campaign Closed
This campaign ended on April 7, 2013
Select a Perk
  • $5USD
    Well Wisher

    You have our sincere gratitude and appreciation for your contribution. We know that you didn’t have to give anything at all so we THANK YOU!

    7 claimed
    Estimated delivery: May 2013
  • $10USD
    Interest Group

    On the Byron Hurt website [www.BHurt.com], we will add your name to the Hazing “Thank You” page as one of the film’s funders.

    39 claimed
    Estimated delivery: May 2013
  • $25USD
    Core Interest Group

    Contributors on the "Core Interest Group" level will receive the same as those on the Interest Group level PLUS a Hazing souvenir and a free video download of Hazing once it becomes available. Souvenir may include a wrist band, magnet, note pad, or similar gift.

    114 claimed
    Estimated delivery: May 2013
  • $50USD

    Contributors on the "Followers" level will receive all the above PLUS an autographed Hazing poster and an autographed DVD from the Byron Hurt Film Collection. Choose from one of these films only: I Am A Man; Barack and Curtis; or Hip-Hop: Beyond Beats and Rhymes. NOTE: Hazing (DVD) is not included at this perk level.

    45 claimed
    Estimated delivery: May 2013
  • $100USD

    Contributors on the "Friends" level will receive Hazing (DVD), as well as all of the above. Soul Food Junkies as an option at this level.

    48 claimed
    Estimated delivery: December 2016
  • $250USD

    Contributors on the "Supporters" level will receive a free download of Hazing once it becomes available, PLUS an autographed DVD copy of each film in the Byron Hurt Film Collection [specifically, the DVDs are I Am A Man; Barack and Curtis; Hip-Hop: Beyond Beats and Rhymes; Soul Food Junkies; and Hazing (once it becomes available)].

    6 claimed
    Estimated delivery: December 2016
  • $500USD

    Contributors on the "Fans" level will receive the same perks as those on the "Supporters" level, PLUS a God Bless the Child Productions or "No Hazing" t-shirt.

    3 claimed
    Estimated delivery: December 2016
  • $1,000USD

    Contributors at the "Ambassador" level will be listed as an “Ambassador” in the film credits of Hazing (upon completion of the film), AND receive all of the perks at the "Fan" level.

    2 claimed
    Estimated delivery: August 2016
  • $1,500USD
    Contributing Producer

    Be listed as a “Contributing Producer” in the film credits of Hazing (upon completion of the film), PLUS receive all the perks at the "Ambassador" level.

    1 claimed
    Estimated delivery: August 2016
  • $3,000USD

    At this level, get all the perks of the "Contributing Producer" level PLUS be listed as a producer in the film credits of Hazing (upon completion of the film), AND get a 60 minute one-on-one consultation with Byron Hurt about filmmaking (via phone or Skype).

    0 claimed
    Estimated delivery: August 2016
  • $5,000USD

    Same as the "Producer" level PLUS get the Byron Hurt Multi-Media Presentation package (includes a 30 minute multi-media keynote from Byron Hurt plus dinner with students and faculty). Contributors also receive an organizational credit as a sponsor of Hazing (upon completion of the film). This reward level is subject to special conditions (i.e., the contributor must cover travel and hotel) and is only offered to colleges, universities, cultural arts institutions, non-profits, and corporations.

    0 claimed
    Estimated delivery: September 2016
  • $10,000USD
    Premium Sponsor

    Receive everything at the "Sponsor" level plus an upgrade to the Byron Hurt Multi-Media PREMIUM Presentation (which includes an extended multi-media 60 minute keynote, a separate classroom visit, and a dinner with students and faculty).

    0 claimed
    Estimated delivery: December 2016
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