The world premiere of From Bedrooms To Billions, a new documentary movie telling the remarkable story of the UK gaming industry, will take place at the UK’s biggest ever videogames event, EGX London 2014.
Running from Thursday 25 to Sunday 28 September at London’s Earls Court exhibition centre, EGX London 2014 will feature the hottest triple A and indie games, a huge fighting game tournament and an impressive line-up of developer sessions.
The film’s co-director, Anthony Caulfield, commented: “I am thrilled to confirm that From Bedrooms To Billions will be premiered at this summer’s EGX event in London. This is the perfect audience and the perfect venue, I couldn’t be happier. The plan is have two showings – one for the trade and one for the public – and we’ll have special guests and some very special surprises in store. Further exciting announcements will be made soon.
“Making From Bedrooms To Billions has been a two-year labour of love and it’s very nearly finished. The first people to see it will be our incredible crowd funding backers and those who pre-order before 31st May. These amazing people have raised over £100,000 for the film’s production and without them it simply wouldn’t have happened, so they get the exclusive ‘Backers Edition’ with tons of great extras. The theatrical cut will then premiere at EGX in September before going on general release to cinemas around the UK.
“While the film has strong nostalgic appeal, we were determined to look forward as well as back. The way the UK somehow lost its way from the early golden era of development and publishing is very sad. However, we firmly believe this will change and that many great opportunities lie ahead, some of which we cover in the film.
“We hope From Bedrooms To Billions will serve as a catalyst for young IT enthusiasts to push the boundaries of what is perceived possible, just as visionary game developers did with the ZX Spectrum and Commodore 64 in the 1980s. That’s why, once the film has finished its cinema run, we’re making it available to schools, colleges and universities free of charge. It fits nicely with the community feel of the whole project.”
The free-to-schools plan was announced at the recent Business and Universities Game Syndicate (BUGS) launch at BAFTA in London. Co-founded by veteran games developer Jon Hare and Professor Carsten Maple, BUGS aims to connect graduates and employers in order to reverse the UK game industry’s slide down the international pecking order.
This high profile event was attended by, among other senior figures, the Minister for Culture, Communications and Creative Industries, Ed Vaizey, and Ian Livingstone CBE, co-founder of Games Workshop and author of the NESTA report, who led the successful campaign to put computing back on the national curriculum.
Professor Carsten Maple said: “To get the UK back into the top three games developers in the world is a big challenge. We need to make sure we’ve got a good talent pool and that we attract all kinds of students. From Bedrooms To Billions is going to be screened at each of the universities and it will tell us all about how the industry has changed.”
Minister for Culture, Communications and Creative Industries, Ed Vaizey, added: “We are experiencing a creative industrial revolution and games are at the heart of it. We want the industry to benefit from graduates who are coming out of university with the right skills, which means they hit the ground running.”