'Reading Rainbow' project becomes most-backed Kickstarter of all-time

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kickstarter, levar burton, reading rainbow

Actor LaVar Burton of Reading Rainbow and Star Trek fame launched a Kickstarter campaign in late May. He initially set out to raise $1 million to help bring the children's television series to more platforms, develop a version of Reading Rainbow that teachers can use in the classroom and be able to give it to low-income schools free of charge.

The campaign spread across the Internet like wildfire and within the first day, backers shattered the primary $1 million goal. The project continued forward with numerous stretch goals and when it finally came to an end on Wednesday afternoon, more than $5.4 million had been pledged.

In the process, Burton's Kickstarter earned the distinction of becoming the most widely-backed campaign of all-time.

Reading Rainbow originally aired on PBS from 1983 through 2006 with Burton hosting the show throughout its entire run. Reruns aired until 2009 and after it all came to an end, Burton purchased the rights to the show and launched a tablet app in 2012.

Even still, Burton realized that his work was far from over as not all families have access to tablets. Most families do, however, have access to the Internet in some fashion, hence the Kickstarter campaign.

In an effort to garner some last-minute pledges, Family Guy creator Seth McFarlane agreed to match up to $1 million in pledges over the $4 million mark. It would seem that McFarlane is now on the hook as donations climbed above the $5 million mark.

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