For those of you who are going to the Philly Classic you have probably heard the name of Mark Wolfe. He is one of the people who help put this great show on ... and, along with a crew of friends, an Independent Filmmaker. The film he has helped produce and create is entitled Gamers. Continue reading the interview below to find out just what the skinny is on this film. I am sure you will agree with me when I state that this film will totally PWN!
tss: How was the idea for Gamers conceived?
Mark: It really was a spontaneous thought after speaking with several G4 forum members and discussing a meet-up at Philly Classic 4 in March of 2003. As the momentum and enthusiasm of the forum goers mounted we quickly decided that what we needed to do was "make a movie" as my wife April [and G4 Forum moderator] pointed out. It really started to take off when I posted the idea on the forums [not sure of the link but it's still there somewhere] and "del" from G4 actually purchased a table for us all to hang out at and use a base of operations and then all sorts of people started offering use of cameras and stuff, most notably, Nathan Bramble who is "zampzon" on the G4 forums and who has a very nice video rig and actually has independent film making experience. Then at some point, the producer of Starcade, Jim Caruso put me in touch with a former Starcader, Damon Claussen, who lives in California and works in the video industry. He went out to CGE last summer and interviewed a lot of people. Damon and Nathan are really the technical guidance of this whole project, I'm just flying by the seat of my pants as a director, producer and sometime camera man.
tss: How many people were involved with the filming and planning of this documentary?
Mark: I'd say initially it was a group of about 12 people and maybe 45 -50 people all told from the G4 forums showed up to PC4 from all over the country.
tss: Who are some of the people interviewed and featured in this film?
Mark: We were really lucky to get people like Vic and Tommy (Victor Lucas and Tommy Tallarico of the Judgment Day and Electric Playground TV shows, etc.) right away during E3, but there are so many other notable folks like Tim Skelly who worked on q-bert at gottlieb and many, many Twin Galaxies record holders. We went to FunSpot in New Hampshire and did a very in depth interview with Gary Vincent who runs FunSpot and then of course there's all the gamers, just people like you and me who are very willing to discuss all things game related.
tss: Is there anyone in particular that you are really psyched to have as part of Gamers?
Mark: I really have no favorites. I'm continually amazed at the positive response people have taken to being a part of this and we have an open door policy on contributions and donations of peoples time and equipment, it's really been an amazing project so far in terms of just regular gamers.
tss: What is the main focus of the project?
Mark: Very good question. For some time and even now it has been very hard to put a focus on this thing since it's such a wide spectrum of events and people that we've interviewed and filmed. I'm still trying to nail down a story to tell with the editing of what we have so far.
Right now there seem to be several major themes:
1. Women in gaming ... men's often lopsided perspective and of course the right perspective from women who game.
2. Quirky or anecdotal first person experiences and stories from gamers.
3. The geek factor ... that's a big one :) ... us gamers are such geeks, many of us anyway, myself included. Collectors fall into this category in a big way.
4. Historical. This one is tough but we have a lot of footage and interviews we're trying to weave together.
I'm working all the time on honing this into a narrative that can be told like a story through interviews with others. My intention is to not include any actual narration at all and let the editing tell the story, but it's tough since I am in no way a film maker with experience. My background is in professional audio production so this is a whole new
ballgame to me.
tss: From what I saw of the film, it looks awesome. What are your plans for Gamers?
Mark: Another great question. I'm making this out of the "need" to do it. I would love to be able to have something at the end of it all that people enjoy watching and I think the success of that initial goal will determine where it goes and how far.
tss: I see that the film will be premiering at the Philly Classic 5 this year. Can you tell us a bit about what we will see and the times that it will be showing?
Mark: What I'm showing at philly classic is really only a small taste of the film as a whole. This will only be 25 minutes, less with intro and credits. It's really a preview of things to come and very much a work in progress. There will be no slated times as of now. We have a lot of other cool stuff to show people. Victor Lucas sent a special 100th episode edition of Electric Playground ... it's 90 minutes [which we'll be raffeling off at the joychix booth] and we have a host of other movies and shorts to show during the 2 day expo.
tss: Will we be able to purchase a copy of this at the Classic?
Mark: Not yet. I'm hoping we can have something together by summer 2004
tss: Mark, I would like to thank you for your time and I greatly look forward to viewing this premiere. Do you have anything else you would like to share with us?
Mark: My pleasure. The only thing that I would add is that we are always looking for interested and enthusiastic people to help us with this project. Donations of time and equipment are always welcome and you can contact us through the website if you want to help out.
People, you have to check out this premiere at the Philly Classic this year. If you are reading this and are capable of ambulating to your video game console, there is no excuse to miss this.
Philly Classic Site
Originaly posted at serious fix.
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