LeVar Burton Plans to Take Reading Rainbow Even Further 

With the huge success of the Reading Rainbow app Kickstarter page and hoping to give universal Web access to children, the star behind it all has big, big plans for the extra cash raised and big, big hopes for the generations to come.

LeVar Burton
LeVar Burton Courtesy of Reading Rainbow

Overjoyed, ecstatic.

These words could be used to describe LeVar Burton’s current emotions, inefficient and near nondescriptive as they may be in comparison to the star’s real feelings in light of the success of his Kickstarter campaign to bring back the popular reading show Reading Rainbow as a digital app.

“It’s still a bit overwhelming because it’s so unexpected. It’s just so unexpected,” Burton told The Root, laughing gleefully while talking about the campaign that made $1 million—its initial goal—within 24 hours of launching, blowing everyone away with its success. “The first three days we averaged a million dollars a day.”

The beloved actor, well-known for his roles in projects from Roots to Reading Rainbow to Star Trek: The Next Generation, made it clear that the status of the project currently—$3,378,932 in donations as of 1:20 p.m. June 3—is due mostly to those who gave what little they could.

“The majority of these donations are the $5 and the $10 and the $25, and I want to thank everybody who has donated $1,” he insisted. “Please stop apologizing for not being able to give more because we’re getting it done. We’re going to be able to do so much good with this money.”

“It’s that first generation of Reading Rainbow kids, the ’80s and ’90s babies whom I feel like I had a hand in raising them,” he added, his voice filled with pride. “To see them grow up and really want to give back and make sure the succeeding generations are able to have Reading Rainbow as an influence in their lives …. I’m enormously proud of the millennials because they’ve embraced it. This is their Kickstarter now. We started it, but it’s y’all’s now!”

So roughly $2.3 million past his goal, with a whopping 28 more days to go in the campaign, what plans does Burton and the rest of his group have for the extra dough?

Well, now Burton has his eyes set on another goal of $5 million. The extra money will go toward getting even more access for even more kids, one way or another.

“We know that with $5 million we can really lock down universal access,” he told The Root. “We’re only on two platforms right now. We’re on the iPad … and the Kindle Fire. So with $5 million we can be on mobile devices, we can be on Android, which is really important. We can be on gaming consoles [like] Xbox. … So this is really huge for universal access, reaching as many kids as we can.”