Today Game Developers Conference organizers are delighted to announce the films selected to be part of the 2020 GDC Film Festival, one of the only narrative film fests focused on the art and culture of video games!
This year the 3rd Annual GDC Film Festival will again take place at the Yerba Buena Center For The Arts' Screening Room - directly adjacent to the Moscone Center - from Monday, March 16th through Wednesday, March 18th during GDC.
All screenings will be open to all GDC 2020 pass holders on a first-come, first-served basis. Across the three days a wide range of documentaries and other filmed material based around the video game medium will be screened, and the Festival will include onstage Q&As with film-makers.
Game producer/designer and journalist Mathew Kumar (Sound Shapes, Indivisible) will once again be MC-ing the festival and co-programming the featured films. Without further ado, here's a look at the selected films! Please note that all showtimes are Pacific Standard.
Monday, March 16th
Title: Not For Resale
Not For Resale is a documentary feature film that examines the decline of physical media in the video game industry alongside the rise of digital distribution. Changing technology has affected everything from secondhand mom & pop retail stores to independent game developers. As the way we access media moves inevitably into the future, new opportunities arise.
But what gets left behind?
Featuring interviews with over a dozen game store owners across the US & Canada, Dave Hagewood (CEO of Psyonix), Andrea Rene (What's Good Games), Frank Cifaldi (The Video Game History Foundation), Greg Miller (Kinda Funny), James Rolfe (Cinemassacre), Pat Contri (Author), Kelsey Lewin, Blake J. Harris (“Console Wars”) and David Gibson (Preservationist, The Library of Congress).
At 4:40 PM GDC 2020 Film Festival attendees can look forward to an intriguing assortment of videos produced by video essayist Jacob Geller, with potential to examine everything from Call of Duty to the cultural legacy of the headshot in video games.
Title: Raising Kratos
Raising Kratos documents the five year, herculean effort to reinvent one of the greatest stories in gaming, God of War. Facing an unknown future, Santa Monica Studio took a massive risk, fundamentally changing their beloved franchise and re-establishing their rightful place in video game history.
More than just a “making of,” this cinematic journey of second chances rooted in family, sacrifice, struggle and doubt follows game director Cory Barlog and those who chase perfection in art and storytelling. Witness the incredible defeats, the unpredictable outcomes and the down-to-the-wire tension on full display in this true-life redemption story.
Tuesday, March 17th
Title: Against The Odds
When there's 25 million dollars on the line, and all of the odds are against you, you find out who your true friends are.
"Against the Odds" follows the dramatic true story of legendary esports team "OG" through almost a decade of struggle, sacrifice and dedication, leading to the incredible events of The International 2018 - the worlds largest Dota 2 tournament (and largest esports prize pool in history).
Title: Mother To Earth
A documentary about one of Nintendo’s biggest cult classics - Mother - better known in North America as Earthbound Beginnings. Explore the 25 year history of this game and learn about its localization, cancellation, and later realization as it finally made its way to the WiiU’s virtual console.
This is the first time a film will unveil this utterly fascinating side of unreleased video games and prototypes. Follow Earthbound Beginnings’ incredible journey, from its initial creation to its eventual release. And the best part is, it’s all true!
At 7:30 PM on Tuesday GDC 2020 Film Festival attendees will be treated to a fresh documentary from crowdfunded video game documentary production house Noclip!
Wednesday, March 18th
Title: A Dream Cast
For the 20th anniversary of the Dreamcast, directors of some of the console's most iconic titles discuss how they encountered the Dreamcast, the context at the time, in addition to the story behind their titles and their views on the fate of the console.
Full Cast: Hiroshi Iuchi (Ikaruga), Kenji Kanno (Crazy Taxi), Masayoshi Kikuchi (Jet Set Radio), Rieko Kodama (Eternal Arcadia), Tetsuya Mizuguchi (Space Channel 5 / Rez), Tetsu Okano (Segagaga), Yoot Saito (Seaman) & Hiroaki Yotoriyama (SoulCalibur)
Title: M2: Complete Works
M2: Complete Works dives deep into the history of Japanese game developer M2, who are well known for elaborately porting retro games to modern platforms.
From their humble beginnings porting Gauntlet to the Sega Genesis by eye and memory to their releases on the Nintendo Switch, M2 has been involved with some of the most iconic game series of all time.
GDC 2020 runs from Monday, March 16th through Friday, March 20th. This will be the 34th edition of GDC, and now that registration is open, you'll want to take a look at the (ever-expanding) session schedule and your GDC pass options -- register early to lock in the best price!