San Francisco native Margaret Cho spent a good portion of last winter busking to draw attention to the situation of the homeless in San Francisco. I caught up with her one December afternoon as she and some friends and colleagues performed outside the Roxie, singing songs, giving away food and tampons, and performing a strip tease for dollar bills that then made their way into the hands of people who could really use them. It was legit, with none of the now-get-me-the-Purell vibe you sometimes see with liberal-leaning celebs once the cameras turn off.
It was all part of her campaign, #BeRobin, which came about after Robin Williams’ suicide. Williams had always paid special attention to homeless individuals, writing clauses into his contracts that stipulated there be at least a few positions on the crew for people in tough circumstances. “Don’t grieve Robin, be Robin,” Cho was told, and decided to put this philanthropic spirit into practice.
Now, S.F. comic, playwright, and filmmaker Kurt Weitzmann has begun an Indiegogo campaign to fund a documentary film about the #BeRobin campaign. #BeRobinTheMovie highlight’s Cho’s outreach. On the crowdfunding page, Weitzmann writes
“We have a document of what #BeRobin was, what it is, and what it can be. And we need a little help getting this finished — more editing, color correction, music licensing, festival fees, and screenings at future #BeRobin events. And a pony. I’ve never had a pony. Since everybody scrolls down to see what goodies being a top-level funder gets them, I’ll spare you the effort and reveal that a cool $5,000 means a signed, custom-printed, one-of-a-kind photo of Margaret Cho performing at a #BeRobin event and an executive producer credit on the film. Me, I’d love to see my name listed as the Best Boy Grip, but that’s still a shot of ego juice.