The 1 Second Film

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The 1 Second Film
The 1 Second Film flier
Directed byNirvan Mullick
Produced byCollaboration Foundation[1]
Running time
1 second (61 minutes of credits)
CountryUnited States
BudgetUS$1 million (intended)

The 1 Second Film is an American non-profit collaborative art project being created by thousands of people around the world, including many celebrities.[2]

The film is built around one second of animation (made of 24 large collaborative paintings), and is followed by 1 hour of credits, listing everyone who participates. A feature-length 'making of' documentary will play alongside the credits.[3]

The project allows people around the world to participate online, and lists everyone who joins the crew as "Special Thanks" in the film credits.[4] The production relies on crowd funding to raise the budget; everyone who donates or raises US$1 or more gets their name listed as a Producer in the film's credits.[5][6] The production also gives a Publicist credit to crew members who refer at least one friend.[7] The film currently has over 56,000 crew members from 158 countries.[1]

The 1 Second Film is the flagship production of The Collaboration Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit arts organization formed to create global collaborative art projects that address various social issues. Once finished, any profits raised by The 1 Second Film will be donated to the Global Fund for Women, an independent charity. The online community being formed by The 1 Second Film project will be able to participate in future Collaboration Foundation projects.


Participants paint one frame of The 1 Second Film's animation during a party.

The title of The 1 Second Film derives from the fact that the animation at the core of the film project is just one second long (24 frames). The animation consists of 12 large frames (9 ft x 5 ft paintings). The frames were painted by hundreds of people during a multi-disciplinary event on March 8, 2001 (International Women's Day) at California Institute of the Arts. The event included live-performers and musicians; people attending the event were invited to help paint the frames of animation. Each frame had an art director that engaged the audience as participants; color design for the animation was selected by Jules Engel. Each of the 12 paintings is filmed twice (on 70 mm film) to create the 24 frames in one second of film.

The one second of animation will be immediately followed by an estimated one hour of end credits. Alongside the credits will be a feature-length documentary on the creation of the artwork.[8]

The production gives a Special Thanks to everyone who registers to join on Crew Members then get profiles on and can participate more and get additional film credits.

The film is being crowd-funded by public donations.[9] Donors receive a Producer credit in the film for a minimum of US$1.00 (with no maximum). Depending on the amount donated, the contributor is credited either as an Associate Producer (US$1–9.99), Producer (US$10–99.99), or Executive Producer (US$100 and up). Producers get listed in order of amount donated, which has led to the general public outbidding many of the celebrity producers to get a top billing.

The production also gives a Publicist credit to crew members who refer one or more people to join. Publicists get listed in order of referrals.

Project history[edit]

The 1 Second Film began as a student project by Nirvan Mullick in 2001 while at California Institute of the Arts. The director set out to create a collaborative art project that would bring his school together, and later expanded the project after the success of the initial event.[10] Seed funds for the animation painting event came from a US$1,500 CalArts Grant, an additional US$3,000 was raised by selling producer credits for donations of US$1 or more. In 2004, after graduating and finishing two other animated short films, the director began fundraising to expand The 1 Second Film project by selling US$1 producer credits on the streets of Los Angeles. After raising enough to buy a video camera, the director began to document the fundraising process to include as part of a documentary about the project. In 2005, after getting several celebrities to donate, the director launched a petition drive along with the help of Stephen Colbert to get the credits of The 1 Second Film listed on the Internet Movie Database. In March 2005, IMDb began listing the credits.[11]

The IMDb listing helped the project to grow online. In May 2006, a video of several high-profile celebrities donating to The 1 Second Film was featured on the homepage of YouTube, helping the project raise over US$7,000 in four days. In 2007, the project's first automated website was built to give community profiles to all participants, allowing for the project to scale up.

Celebrity producers[edit]

A variety of celebrities have donated to become producers of the project. Producers include:

Contributors also include YouTube CEO Chad Hurley, YouTube stars including iJustine and Brookers, as well as Kyle MacDonald from One red paperclip.

The full listing of celebrity producers can be viewed on The 1 Second Film's website.

Road to Oprah Tour[edit]

The 1 Second Film launched a Road to Oprah tour in October 2007, with the goal of reaching Oprah Winfrey's studio in Chicago and asking her for $1 to become a producer.[12] The tour was organized online by sending a newsletter to over 7,400 producers of the project with a request to help set up presentations from Los Angeles to Chicago. Presentations were organized by online supporters at YouTube, Google, Universities, high schools, coffee shops, skate parks, a veterans' home, and house parties across America. A used school bus was purchased on eBay for US$3,100, and converted to a bio-diesel production bus. The 30-day tour, covering 10,000 miles, took place from October–November 2007. An alt-country folk band called the Evangenitals joined the tour, performing music at presentations and composing songs for the documentary. The day the Road to Oprah bus reached Harpo Studios in Chicago, Oprah had traveled unexpectedly to Africa to address a crisis at her Leadership Academy for Girls. The tour will be included as part of the documentary. Another tour is being planned before the film is completed.

IMDb history[edit]

The director of The 1 Second Film submitted the celebrity producer credits of The 1 Second Film to the Internet Movie Database. After being rejected, the director sent a link to a video of Stephen Colbert requesting his US$11 producer credit be listed on IMDb. IMDb then began to list all of The 1 Second Film's credits,[13] including unknowns who donated US$1 or more to the project online. Thousands of people began to discover the film title under the production credits of the various celebrities involved. The project spread online, attracting donations from around the world. Several celebrities also donated online, including Jonah Hill and Ryan Reynolds. The IMDb listing reached over 3,000 producers. However, due to the high volume of submissions, IMDb replaced all of the film's individual producer credits with a single credit for "Producers of The 1 Second Film."[14][15] The entire project was then removed from IMDb. Jon Reeves, head of data acquisition, gave the following reasons on the IMDb message boards when revisiting the eligibility of the listing:

At the time I met Nirvan, he had assured me there would be significant national press coverage by last summer. We gave him the benefit of the doubt, and a significant grace period. I see no entries in the Google News archives or anywhere else that come close to meeting that standard. I'm becoming increasingly convinced that, whatever the intentions of the filmmakers (and Nirvan certainly seemed earnest when I talked to him), in practice, 1SF is currently more of a performance art project than an actual film. (Note that the bulk of the film has been, ever since we originally listed it, the documentary of the various events surrounding it.) I will say that this is the first time that I've looked at their site where the emphasis really does seem to be on finishing the film, and not the various circuses around it.

I would point out that Nirvan said last February: "Jon, I promise we will have significant press to show within 3 months, and am fine with you suspending all our listings if we haven’t done so by then." At the time, they were working on revamping their website and their Oprah promotional tour. Since both those activities are now complete, I see no reason not to suspend this title.
—Jon Reeves,, January 8, 2008[16]

He later posted an update stating that the title manager agreed and had made the decision to suspend the listing until further notice.[17]

When this decision was later questioned, he added:

When I spoke with Nirvan (over a year ago!), he was given specific benchmarks and timetables which he agreed to for its continued listing. Those were not met, and the listing was removed (in fact, quite some time after the deadline).

This film has been 7 years in the making, and is still only about 1/4 of the way to its fundraising goal. Our usual standard for listing an in-production film is that it have significant involvement of "name" individuals and measurable progress every 6 months. The involvement of the "name" people in this case is generally about 5 minutes each, plus trivially small (for them) financial contributions. The progress has continually been a moving target, with no end in sight. The words "The Last Dangerous Visions" will make sense to science fiction fans (it's a book that's been famously "coming soon" since 1973).
—Jon Reeves,, April 21, 2008[18]

Future productions[edit]

The 1 Second Film is flagship production of The Collaboration Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization formed to produce collaborative art projects on a global scale while addressing various social issues. The future projects include a "5 Phase Plan" that will consist of films animated during simultaneous collaborative art events around the world. Each collaborative phase increases in scale while addressing a different social issue.

The Collaboration's Board of Directors includes Julie Taymor, Albert Maysles, Ben Goldhirsh, Stephen Nemeth, and Nirvan Mullick.[19]


  1. ^ a b The 1 Second Film official website
  2. ^ Celebrities. The 1 Second Film. Retrieved on 2013-10-03.
  3. ^ No byline (2004-11-22). "Mini-moguls Get One Second of Fame", Brandweek 45 (42): 34.
  4. ^ Special Thanks (free). The 1 Second Film. Retrieved on 2013-10-03.
  5. ^ Schaefer, Glen. "Big deal about a really short film; L.A. animator's one-second film gets big backers for only $1", The Province, 2007-07-12, p. B4.
  6. ^ "One-second movie offers cheap fame to 'producers'", Windsor Star, 2007-07-13, p. C8.
  7. ^ Publicists. The 1 Second Film. Retrieved on 2014-11-09.
  8. ^ Bridges, C. A. "Me and Christina Ricci, we got this project together". Daytona Beach News-Journal Online. Archived from the original on 2006-11-14. Retrieved 2006-11-04.
  9. ^ Monsalve, Frederico. "Industry", The Sunday Star-Times, 2005-06-19, p. E5.
  10. ^ Aldrich, Victoria. "1 Second Film taking months to make", The Daytona Beach News-Journal, 2006-11-17, p. S3.
  11. ^ "The 1 Second Film: The Production". Retrieved 2006-11-04.
  12. ^ Thomson, Beverly (2007-07-13). "The largest collaboration in filmmaking history", Canada AM broadcast.
  13. ^ "Re: THE 1 SECOND FILM should be listed". IMDb Boards: Contributors Help. 2005-02-03. Retrieved 2008-09-03.
  14. ^ Producers of the 1 Second Film on IMDb
  15. ^ "Why did IMDb remove thousands of our producers?". The 1 Second Blog. 2007-02-05. Retrieved 2007-02-07.
  16. ^ "Re: 1 Second Film - still eligible?". IMDb Boards: Contributors Help. 2008-01-08. Retrieved 2008-05-24.
  17. ^ "Re: 1 Second Film - still eligible?". IMDb Boards: Contributors Help. 2008-01-09. Retrieved 2008-05-24.
  18. ^ "Re: THE 1 SECOND FILM should be listed". IMDb Boards: Contributors Help. 2008-04-21. Retrieved 2008-05-24.
  19. ^ "The Collaboration Foundation 5 Phase Plan". Retrieved 2006-11-04.

External links[edit]