The Boys at the Bar (partially found unfinished comedy film; 2012-2013)

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This article has been tagged as NSFW due to its crude sexual content.

BATB artwork.jpeg

Promotional artwork.

Status: Partially Found

The Boys at the Bar was an unfinished independent comedy film produced by Project 23, an educational program supervised by filmmaker Richard Dutcher. Despite being filmed in a relatively short time frame and having a successful Kickstarter campaign, delays in post-production prevented the film from getting released.


The film centers on a wild birthday party at a St. Louis pub named Papa Lamb's, where a group of friend's mess around and tell raunchy jokes.


The genesis for this project came near the end of 2011 when Richard Dutcher hosted a "Producers Master Class" for aspiring talent. During the year-long class, they would learn how to take a movie from conception to distribution with the goal of getting one made by the end. [1] Twenty-three people applied, and the program assumed the name Project 23 to reflect this. Beginning on February 26, 2012, classes were held weekly at a Salt Lake City office space.

Dutcher had an idea to do a comedy that would take place in one location and would not involve conflict, inspired by a night he had at a bar where he and his friends' told jokes.[2] The group agreed to the project due to be being relatively inexpensive and they raised $150,000 to get it produced.

The team was able to obtain notable talent including seasoned DP Bill Butler, who had previously shot Dutcher's Evil Angel, the late prolific actor Bo Hopkins, Playboy Playmate Scarlett Keegan, Mia Tate of Oh Brother, Where Art Thou fame, comedian Brian Gallivan, and animal actor Crystal the Monkey. Sponsorships were put in place with Guinness, Torano, Andrew Charles, and more. Professional Utah crew members were also enlisted to help out.

The film was shot at the Wiseguys Comedy Club in SLC over a period of a single week: May 19-25, 2012. A Facebook page was soon created to showcase various photos from the shoot as well as to provide updates. On February 23, 2013, a trailer for the edited film was shown at Dutcher's Oscar Bash Party at the same filming location.[3]

Also of note is that the film was submitted to Sundance, but it got rejected.


A Kickstarter campaign for The Boys at the Bar was launched on March 30, 2013, to raise funds for color correction, sound mixing, music, and visual effects. Later in the campaign, its projected goal of $30,000 was falling short and Dutcher decided to go on a hunger strike on April 28 to raise more awareness of the project. He recorded daily recounts of his fast in a series of YouTube vlogs. Due to health problems, Dutcher called the strike off on May 14.[4]

Near the end of the campaign, a single pledge of $10,000 came through that brought the total amount over the goal, although the backer's identity remains suspect.[5] Unfortunately, the entire campaign was suspended due to a copyright infringement claim regarding footage related to the behind-the-scenes material in the pitch video.[6] Dutcher stated that the complaint was filed by a student who was dismissed during production[7] and apparently had a personal vendetta against him.[8]

The dispute was resolved with the pitch video being taken down. Thus, the campaign closed on May 21, 2013, with 297 backers raising $31,580 for the film. The estimated date for the release according to the rewards was for July.

Unfortunately, by that month, an update was posted on Kickstarter informing backers of a delay. Almost two years later, on March 15, 2015, Dutcher posted another update stating the pitfall holding the film back had been overcome and that he would post a follow-up on the 20th after a meeting with the producers. That never happened and this was the last update for Kickstarter backers.

On January 8, 2016, the Facebook page posted an announcement that finishing funds for the film had been secured and that the film would premiere on April 29. This did not occur as posts indicated that the date was pushed back. This was the last public update for the film.

Dutcher acknowledged the delay in a couple of separate classes he held, stating that it was due to finalizing the color correction. In 2018, he posted on Facebook that he had a completed print, although a later post walked back on it a little stating that it was almost finished. Regardless, no release plans were announced and nothing regarding the film has been mentioned since.

When asked about it, one of the producers had this to say:

"The current status of Boys at the Bar is “not finished yet.” And no one is actively working on it that I know of. We ran out of money several times during postproduction and it all faded off several years ago. I’ll be surprised if it ever gets done."



The Kickstarter pitch video is no longer accessible on the site, but it was recovered and uploaded to the Internet Archive. While the film's trailer was privatized on YouTube, it was up long enough for it to be uploaded to Dailymotion and can be found below.

All of Dutcher's vlogs for his hunger strike have since been removed from YouTube and are currently lost.

One of the producers created a SoundCloud playlist consisting of music that supposedly would be used for the film.[10]


Trailer for the film.

External Links


  1. Archived Facebook page for the class. Retrieved 05 Jun '22
  2. Richard Dutcher interview on the Let's Go Eat Show. Retrieved 05 Jun '22
  3. Facebook page for Oscar Bash. Retrieved 05 Jun '22
  4. Fox 13 report for hunger strike. Retrieved 05 Jun '22
  5. Description in video. Retrieved 05 Jun '22
  6. Complaint on Kickstarter. Retrieved 05 Jun '22
  7. Update on the Salt Lake Tribune (archived). Retrieved 05 Jun '22
  8. Blog post by Jason Bennion. Retrieved 05 Jun '22
  9. Personal email, name withheld.
  10. SoundCloud playlist. Retrieved 05 Jun '22