Kickstarter

Reading Rainbow 'crushed' record for most Kickstarter backers

June 30, 2014 at 2:12 PM ET

Video: Levar Burton praised fans for helping his ‘Reading Rainbow’ Kickstarter campaign reached its $1 million goal in eleven hours. The campaign focuses on expanding the current app, helping the show live on in a digital age.

The Kickstarter campaign to bring back "Reading Rainbow" was a massive success from the very beginning, raising $1 million in only 11 hours. On Monday, with two days to go, it had raised more than $4.5 million and officially had more backers - 92,000-plus and growing - than any other Kickstarter project in history. (That beats out the 91,585 people who funded the "Veronica Mars" movie last year.)

The "Reading Rainbow" project rode a wave of nostalgia for the children's TV show — which lasted from 1983 to 2006 — to attract the multitude of donors. (Yes, even host LeVar Burton could not get the theme song out of his head). 

When the show comes back, it won't be on PBS. Instead, Burton is looking to expand onto the Internet with Web, smartphone and console versions of the "Reading Rainbow" tablet app that he released two years ago. To spur last-minute spending, "Family Guy" creator Seth MacFarlane promised to match every donation over $4 million dollar-for-dollar with his own funds. 

Keith Wagstaff writes about technology for NBC News. He previously covered technology for TIME's Techland and wrote about politics as a staff writer at TheWeek.com. You can follow him on Twitter at @kwagstaff and reach him by email at: Keith.Wagstaff@nbcuni.com

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