Comedy man Seth MacFarlane will contribute up to $1 million toward LeVar Burton's Reading Rainbow Kickstarter campaign. Exactly how much the Family Guy creator spends will depend on what other people pledge. MacFarlane has agreed to match whatever comes in after the $4 million mark; Reading Rainbow has brought in over $4,119,000 so far, and Burton is hoping to reach a stretch goal of $5 million. If that happens, MacFarlane will kick in the full million and bring the campaign's grand total to $6 million.
Burton says this would bring Reading Rainbow to 5,000 additional classrooms, on top of the 7,500-plus classrooms that will receive free subscriptions if the stretch goal is met. "With his help, we can make an even bigger difference for an entire generation of kids," he said in a recent update on Kickstarter. MacFarlane's offer runs until the campaign's July 2nd conclusion.
After its decades-long run on PBS, Burton's plan is to bring Reading Rainbow to the web as a powerful, modern learning tool available to teachers everywhere. That's guaranteed to happen since the campaign has already crossed its original $1 million goal, but more money opens the door to even more possibilities. Burton says passing $5M will allow the creation of Reading Rainbow apps for smartphones, tablets, video game consoles, and set-top boxes. Burton brought the beloved children's series back as an iPad app two years ago, a move that inspired him to aim even higher and launch the Kickstarter effort.