Dear Scary Cow community,
It’s with a heavy heart that I’ve made the difficult decision to shut down Scary Cow as on December 23rd, 2020. Like all service-oriented businesses, Covid-19 has hit Scary Cow’s business model very hard to the point that it’s unable to continue. Our pitch meetings, film productions, filmmaker happy hours, and screenings revolved around us networking with each other and creating bonds with filmmakers in the Bay Area – and the pandemic severely hampered those activities this year.
With no viable way to restart Scary Cow any time soon and with funds dwindling, we will be pausing Scary Cow indefinitely. While I hope there may be a time to bring Scary Cow back in the future, I think it’s time to put it into deep hibernation until we have the time, money, and a safe environment for us to make films again. I’m not sure when or even if Scary Cow will re-emerge – but for now it’s time to put it out to pasture.
For the past 13 years, Scary Cow and its members have done truly incredible things. We showed the power of community could work together and make amazing art when they put their mind to it. We made well over 500 films together, had 37 screenings at the Castro, the Roxie, and the Victoria theatres, and had almost 15,000 Bay Area cast and crew work together to push their creative limits and make films. Many of our films have gone on to be screened at some of the most prestigious film festivals in the world and many of our filmmakers have launched their own careers following their dreams making films based, in part, by what they learned being in Scary Cow. I’m proud of what we’ve accomplished together.
I look at Scary Cow as a successful experiment. While we couldn’t survive a global pandemic – we did prove that a community-run organization focused on creating art in a sustainable way is possible. My hope that, in its place, new co-op based art organizations will spring up and will continue the tradition of learning-by-doing that Scary Cow has had core to its mission for over a decade.
I want to say thank you to every single current and past member of Scary Cow. Your support over the years made Scary Cow a reality. Without your art, Scary Cow never could have lasted this long. I know it’s disappointing to say goodbye – but please do continue making films. Seeing how far we’ve come since the beginning in terms of our ability to translate story to screen has been inspiring and I can’t wait to see what you make next. I’ll be leaving the facebook member and alumni group up and running permanently, as well as leaving the email and portal running for the foreseeable future in the hopes it will keep you all connected.
I also want to say thank you to the former and past employees of Scary Cow who helped make this whole thing a reality. In particular, I want to give a massive thank you to Alexa who, over the past decade, has essentially been running the day to day operations of our little organization. Without her hard work and dedication, I don’t think Scary Cow could have lasted this long. I think all of us have been guilty of taking her for granted in helping make Scary Cow be what it is – we’ve been incredibly lucky to have her as a leader. Thank you Alexa – you’ve been the heart of Scary Cow and it’s been incredible working side by side with you to make Scary Cow a reality.
I end this message with an outpouring of gratitude for each and every one of you. As I snuggle up with the warm memories of what Scary Cow was, I wish you the best of luck in your artistic endeavors in the future – and please invite me to your next film’s screening. I’ll bring the popcorn and will be in the front row.