Criminal Minds' Kirsten Vangsness Gets 'Deadly'

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Criminal Minds star Kirsten Vangsness is keeping busy this summer working on a passion project, Kill Me, Deadly, a comedic take on film noir, and she's hoping fans will help to push the project into the home stretch.

Vangsness is executive producing Deadly, a full-length feature based on a 2009 play put on by Los Angeles theater group, Theater of Note. Though half of the footage is shot and the project is 80% funded, the production team is hoping Kickstarter will help to fund the remaining $200,000 needed to complete the labor of love.

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Kirsten tells ET, “In 2009, we did this play, and it was a big success. For a 49-seat theater, it was a big success -- we sold out and got good reviews. And then, because I have this fancy day job [on Criminal Minds], me and some of my other friends that I’ve been doing theatre with for years , (that I have painted stages with at three in the morning and stuff like that), we were like, 'We should do a movie!'"

"My dream was to have the people that were in the play [act] in the movie, pay everybody a living wage, and do something that sort of merges sort of my street theater roots with fancy Hollywood-land, I guess," she says.

Kirsten reveals, "It’s a 1940s film noir spoof. Like a cross between Young Frankenstein and The Rocky Horror Picture Show. It is really cool; it’s like you’re watching a 1940s film, but the speed of the comedy is very quick and very modern, but everything else is really old timey. It’s the kind of movie you want to watch with people." Kirsten plays sex kitten/psychopath Mona Livingston in the film.

Kirsten says she initially funded the movie herself, "I basically took as much money out of the bank account as I could without getting in trouble with my business manager."

Of how the need for Kickstarter arose, Kirsten reveals, "We start shooting it and [my Criminal Minds co-star] Joe Mantegna saw some of it, and he was like, ‘I want to be in this,’ and Paul Tompkins and Lesley-Anne Down [also joined the cast], so we shot until we ran out of money."

To preview footage from Kill Me, Deadly, and to support the project (which had raised $121,000 plus of its goal as of press time), visit its Kickstarter page here.

Criminal Minds returns this fall on CBS.