KickStarter Project Spotlight: From Bedrooms to Billions
‘From Bedrooms to Billions’ is a two hour feature length documentary film telling the remarkable, true story of the British Video Games Industry from 1979 to the present day and how the creativity and vision of a relatively small number of individuals allowed the UK to play a key, pioneering role in the shaping of the billion dollar video games industry, which today dominates the modern world’s entertainment landscape.
Featuring interviews with key contributors to the UK story in video game development, publishing and journalism from over the last 40 years, combined with compelling archive footage, ‘From Bedrooms to Billions’ is the first to attempt to bring this fascinating story together, starting in the late 70’s, spanning ‘Thatcher’s Britain’ of the 80’s and culminating in the dramatic shift of fortunes for the UK Video Games Industry by the late 90’s and beyond. The film celebrates the importance of this era and why it has become such a landmark period in the history of British invention, creativity and industry.
Producer, Anthony Caulfield said “From Bedrooms to Billions has been a very personal project for us since June 2008. Having completed many documentaries we have always wanted to document the rise of the British video games industry and the incredible story that went with it. What’s so fascinating is how the UK computer scene was originally nothing more than a scientific curiosity which snowballed into something so vast. As we started putting this film together we uncovered so many incredible personal stories, these people had to literally make up an industry as they went, some were very successful, but others were not so, however collectively we felt it a strong story that’s long overdue and should make a wonderful movie”.
Fellow Producer Nicola Caulfield said “This film will be a great piece of nostalgic entertainment that documents an important part of UK history. This era is so often overlooked and not known by young British talent looking to enter the games industry, as the vast majority of UK children, school leavers and even students believe that gaming originated mainly from the US and Japan and have little to no knowledge that a British games industry even once existed. It meant a great deal to us that last year enough people out there wanted to see this film made and backed our original funding campaign to begin filming. However as is common with many films financed via crowdfunding, money is now needed to complete post-production, to secure archive footage, stills, music usage and clearances. Without these crucial elements the film would simply be 2 hours of talking heads and not the true and lasting documentary movie experience that the subject matter deserves. So we hope people will rally and help us make a permanent record of this golden era in British Industry”
The ‘From Bedrooms to Billions’ project went live on Kickstarter on Monday 25th February and has just 60 days to reach its funding goal of £18,000.
To help with their cause as well as having the option to simply order a copy of the film on digital download, DVD and Blu-ray, some of the most famous UK Video Games makers and musicians have donated and signed various items that are being offered as funding perks.
The film’s trailer, as well as further information on the ‘From Bedrooms to Billions’ Kickstarter campaign, can be found at http://www.kickstarter.com/
Also the Facebook page for the film can be visited at http://www.facebook.com/pages/
Gracious Film’s own website can be found at www.graciousfilms.com
About the filmmakers
Nicola Caulfield & Anthony Caulfield
Nicola and Anthony began their careers by making film shorts, ‘The Majestic Side’ and ‘Night of your Life’ which won high praise at the 1997 BAFTA Short Film Competition, before going on to make the comedy sketch show ‘Hals Hangover’ in 1999.
They were commissioned by the government of Macau to produce a film on the East Asian Games and have also worked with the rock group ‘Pink Floyd’ to produce a theatrical version of ‘Pink Floyd’s – Pulse’ and a TV version of ‘Dark Side of the Moon’ which were both distributed worldwide.
Nicola and Anthony have also written, produced and directed various acclaimed documentaries for both broadcast and commercial release, including ‘The Story of The Young Ones’, ‘Alternative Rebellion: The beginning of Britain’s Alternative Comedy Scene’, ‘Doctor Who – Stripped for Action’ for the BBC, as well as ‘George Michael – FAITH’ and ‘Jeff’s Wayne’s The War of the Worlds’ for Sony Music. They have made two documentaries on gypsy punk group ‘Gogol Bordello’ for Channel 4 and produced the celebrated HD world music TV series ‘Soundcheck at Momo’s’.
2010 saw the release of their first feature film, ‘Immodesty Blaize – Burlesque Undressed’, which had a worldwide theatrical release and then later on DVD and terrestrial broadcast worldwide.
In addition to this work they have always had a real passion to produce films that document the video games industry. Some of their work has included short films such as ‘The Newsfield Years’ which looks at 1980’s CRASH & ZZAP!64 video game magazine publishers Newsfield Publications and a making of on ‘Ant Attack’ featuring creator Sandy White. In addition they have been commissioned to document worldwide franchises such as an official 10th anniversary film on Virtua Tennis (Virtua Tennis – 10 Years Gone), as well as the official Sonic the Hedgehog 20th Anniversary documentary titled ‘Sonic – The Birth of an Icon’ which was broadcast worldwide.
2012 saw the release of their films ‘Hitman – Burning Hope’ an in-depth ‘fly’ on the wall documentary account of the production of ‘Hitman Absolution’ and ‘Jet Set Radio – A Rude Awakening’ a retrospective look back at the iconic game with the original creators and graffiti legend Eric Haze.