The thing I find most exciting when I tell people we are making a documentary about D&D is not their initial reactions, which fall into categories of being way-too-excited to quiet laughs of derision, but that when told the story, people invariably become interested and want to know more. This confirms that we have a story that wants and needs to be told.
I knew very little about the history of D&D when we first started. I played when I was a kid and we weren’t sticklers for the rules. We had the books, but they were just as good to eat snacks off of, as they were to read.
As we began to do our research on Gary, Dave, TSR, et al, and talked with people who knew the history, we got a glimpse at just how fascinating their story truly is. The way you have to imagine it is to take the story of Facebook, add the Hatfields & the McCoys, throw in some VH1’s Behind the Music and then make sure everyone has forgotten what really happened. It’s a complex, multifaceted story that keeps unfolding the longer we work on this film. I get excited thinking about it.
We hope that by the time we release this film, it will show the impact of the game in the most compelling way possible.
The one regret is that we didn’t start before Gary and Dave passed away. They have left behind a legacy that I think they themselves have never envisioned fully. They will be missed.
There have been several Dungeons & Dragons documentaries (some of these you will find when clicking on our “Links Section”). These films have covered a lot of ground from character studies of gamers to an analysis of the subculture around D&D.
And now, here we are. Why make another film about D&D? What else can be said?
Well, we saw a deeper story that we want to tell. We want to pay respect to the not-so-ordinary people who did an extraordinary thing; they made a game that grew an entire industry and made Dungeons & Dragons the brand name of roleplaying. We want to share with you the origins of the company, TSR, and the Dungeons & Dragons game. We want to lend insight on how the game evolved, and how the company that made it came crumbling down while becoming the training ground for following generations of designers and writers. We want to look at the impact that D&D has had (and let us tell you this: the impact has been major).
Our mission is to make a kickass documentary for people who have never played D&D, for life long fans of the game, and for those of you who simply like in-depth documentaries. We want to use the highest standard possible in the art of independent filmmaking to share this story. Anything less is selling short the legacy of role-playing and all of you.
So, that’s the aspiration, the mission.
Currently, we’re in the chambers of production, having spent the better parts of 2011-2013 in pre-production stages and then securing interviews with some of the key players at TSR, relevant D&D historians, a handful of incredibly creative game-developers, and those that have been inspired by and influenced by role-playing way beyond a table top. We’ve got a few more interviews to go, more research to conduct and archive media to mine through. We hope to finish this year, 2014, the 40th anniversary of the release of the first box set of D&D.
And we want you all along for the ride. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter and read our posts. We want you to be with us every step of the way. You’ll see where we are, who we are interviewing and to what locations we’re traveling. If you have a thought, concern or suggestion, let us know. Just like Zeb Cook shared with us, “it’s important to understand your audience.”
Click here if you’re interested in joining our journey. Since this is a project of the heart, please be patience with our response time.
We’ve got a road ahead of us. Bilbo Baggins once said, “It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out of your door. You step into the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there is no knowing where you might be swept off to.”
This road is leading to a film we think you will love.
Not A Gamer?
If you’ve never played D&D, or don’t consider yourself a gamer this section is for you. When we set out to make this movie we decided on two things: make a good movie and make it for everyone, not just gamers. We wanted a movie that could be watched by someone who’s never heard of Dungeons & Dragons.
The tale behind the making of the game is a fascinating story of loose alliances, destroyed friendships and lost fortunes.
Dungeons & Dragons and TSR, the company that made it, were the training ground for millions of people within some of the most influential industries of our day. We hope that by the time you see how D&D has influenced computer games and online dating to treatment for soldiers with PTSD, you will see a way that D&D has touched your life.
PS. If you play Angry Birds, guess what…you’re a gamer.