After exceeding their $2.1 million crowdfunding goal earlier this year to make a crime drama about Kermit Gosnell and his West Philadelphia "house of horrors," late-term abortion clinic, starting Wednesday, Indiegogo is allowing the Gosnell movie producers to reopen their campaign indefinitely as part of its "forever funding" program.
By reopening the crowdfunding campaign, producers Ann McElhinney, Phelim McAleer and Magdalena Segieda will continue to offer "thank you" gifts to donors and have set new goals for the crime drama, which includes raising an additional $500,000 to extend filming to four weeks, and securing the best actors they can find for the film. The producers also hope to increase the number of backers from the 26,574 who donated over $2.2 million to over 100,000 backers to show potential distributors that a large number of Americans support the project.
"It's a huge boost to the movie — more donations, means more shooting days, better actors, higher production values, it'll mean a better movie. It will also mean we'll be able to get Gosnell's story out to a wider audience," McElhinney said in a statement shared with The Christian Post on Wednesday.
During his 40-year career, Gosnell performed more than 16,000 abortions, according to his defense attorney Jack McMahon, who said — after seeing evidence at the trial showing the physical development of babies who were aborted — that he now believes abortions should be banned in the U.S. at 17 weeks gestation, or earlier.
On May 13, 2013, Gosnell was sentenced to serve life in prison without parole for three counts of first-degree murder for killing babies born alive in his abortion clinic by cutting their spinal cords with scissors. He was also found guilty of involuntary manslaughter for the 2009 death of Karnamaya Mongar, a 41-year-old Nepalese refugee who died from a Demerol overdose administered by his untrained and unlicensed staff.
According to the 2012 grand jury report, Gosnell made $10,000 to $15,000 a day at his late-term abortion facility, but paid his employees a paltry salary.
Long before Gosnell was labeled "America's most successful serial killer" by ABC News correspondent Terry Moran, his partnership with Planned Parenthood and abortionist Harvey Karman led to the 1972 Mother's Day Massacre when nine women died after having late-term abortions performed by the two men.
James Taranto of The Wall Street Journal reported last year that Gosnell and Karman, who served two years in prison for performing abortions without having a medical license, killed nine of the 15 women who were bussed from Chicago to Philadelphia to have late-term abortions.
The device Karman and Gosnell used on the Chicago women was the same device the former used on women in Bangladesh when he traveled there under sponsorship from the International Planned Parenthood Federation.
"… [B]asically plastic razors that were formed into a ball. ... They were coated into a gel, so that they would remain closed. These would be inserted into the woman's uterus. And after several hours of body temperature, ... the gel would melt and these ... things would spring open, supposedly cutting up the fetus," Taranto reported.
McElhinney told CP in a previous interview that, in her opinion, the mainstream media and Hollywood go out of their way to tell every other criminal story of national importance, but they haven't invested any interest in telling the stories of women who were traumatized at Gosnell's abortion clinic and the babies that were killed.
"Thousands of people died in Philadelphia," she said. "Those people were born alive and were viable; and they struggled for life and died a painful death, and they shouldn't be forgotten."
"A lot of people knew that terrible things were happening and there were whistleblowers. There were people making complaints, there were reports that were sent to the authorities, and no one did anything," she added. "For 17 years the departments of health in Pennsylvania never walked across the threshold to go in and examine the premises."
CP previously reported that on April 16, 2013, Dayle Steinberg, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Southeastern Pennsylvania, admitted to Gloria Steinem, the keynote speaker at the organization's spring gala, that Planned Parenthood employees knew about Gosnell's illegal late-term abortion clinic but didn't report him to authorities.
McElhinney added that when asked, many people still don't know who Gosnell is, because the national media largely ignored the news story, which is why they want to get the movie out to as many people as possible.
"We've asked people if they've heard about Gosnell, and they don't know who he is, they don't know the name. And we think it's important to record history," she said.
"You can't have this happen and people not know about it. This case is extraordinary. In a country where Jody Arias is national news, and you have this iconic photograph of the Philadelphia courtroom with the reserved section for the journalists at Gosnell's trial and it was empty. I think that really riled us. That annoyed us. And we thought, 'Come on, this is crazy. This story needs to be told,'" McElhinney explained.
"What we'd like to say to people is: If they feel that this was a neglected story and an important story for everyone to think about, then give $1, give $10 or $10,000 please, and make sure that people find out what happened. Turn up, be there for truth. By giving $1 you're saying, 'I want this done,'" she asserted.
Producers of the Gosnell true crime movie have also acquired the rights to the book, Gosnell's Babies, written by Steve Volk, the only journalist who conducted in-depth interviews with Gosnell.
"To him (Gosnell), the movements of the babies weren't 'real,' weren't 'signs of life' precisely because he was there to kill them. ... I also think he rationalized his treatment of women in a similar way," Volk said in a statement shared with CP.
He added, "Gosnell was the most difficult interview I ever did — funny and warm enough that I enjoyed every conversation, but ultimately so self-aggrandizing and righteous that he could casually twist or try to reframe the facts of his case to make himself the victim of a wrong-headed prosecution."