Hey Everyone! We’re writing to you from the road on the IGTM screening tour! We’ve just completed our l’il swing through the South, where we did a few super fun showings. Life as a touring screening show is an interesting one. It’s certainly busy, certainly tiring, but showing the film to theaters full of folks who seem to dig the film, immediately makes all that tired busy-ness worthwhile. Our first stop on the tour was Tommy’s hometown of Asheville, NC.
Asheville, NC: The evening went really well. It’s pretty neat to be able to have this film exist for the guys in the film as a testament to how hard they worked and how crazy development can get. Because, we’re sure that no matter how much Tommy, Ed & Phil describe to their family/friends what development was like, it must still be eye-opening, and a bit of a revelation to see them actually go through the development process
After the show, we did a Q&A in which we answered some hanging questions and Tommy doled out sage game dev advice to the audience (we’re writing down all of his answers so that we can repeat them later, if asked). Many of whom travelled jaw-droppingly long distances to be there (Charlotte, Tennessee, Florida, Ohio?!?). We’d like to think they came exclusively for the movie, but judging from the prevalence of Meat Boy Tattoos (yes...multiples), it’s kinda clear: They came for the Tommy, but stayed for the movie :)
Raleigh, NC: After Asheville, with Tommy in tow, we drove over to Raleigh and had a very intriguing set of screenings. For these screenings, the good folks at Epic & Red Storm Entertainment, helped present the evening & get the word out. As a result, the audience was packed with Epic, Red Storm & Insomniac employees. We always believed that, even though the film deals with independent development, that the base motivations & thoughts contained in the film were pretty universal. But there was still a nagging (and kind of scary) question mark in our heads as to how AAA devs would react to the movie. There certainly were a lot of those in the crowd at GDC, but this was the first time we had a room of a near-majority of large studio employees. Were they going to like it? Relate to it? Hate it? We didn’t know - when the lights went down, we were a bit nervous.
The Reaction: We peaked into the sold out crowd frequently for the first 10 minutes. We’ve screened the film enough times to get a pretty accurate vibe from the audience based on audience reaction to specific moments in the film. So by the time minute nine rolls around, we know if they’re into the film.
Minute nine came and they were seemed VERY into the film. It was one of the most enthusiastically audible crowds we’ve ever had. Their laughs were loud and knowing - you could tell that they’ve been at similar points in their career. Minute 9? Huge relief.
After the show was another Q & A, lots of lobby talk, hanging out and meeting some super nice, super cool people. In the morning, it was off to Atlanta...
Atlanta, GA: This time we were showing at the awesome - and historic - Plaza Theatre. A great theater. A fantastic upside to booking your own independent tour is that the theaters you end up in mostly independent theaters. Theaters that they tend to be owned & operated by people who love cinema. You walk in, and you can feel it - these guys care about & really love what they do. The places have character - some quirks to be sure - but all of it adds to the experience.
With IGDA - Atlanta & Thrust Interactive as our wonderful hosts. It was another full house, and another great showing. Atlanta represented in full force. We did a Q&A and later grabbed some beers and met some of the Atlanta indie scene. A perfect way to cap off our southern swing.
Adobe Prizes! Of course, no blog post about this tour is complete without an Adobe shout out. They have been absolutely amazing to us. Not only is their support making this all happen (seriously, it is), but they are giving out some incredible prizes. At each of the shows, Adobe gave out an Adobe Master Collection! That’s a dead-serious prize right there. In this tour swing alone, audience members walked away with over $12,000 worth of software courtesy of Adobe! We can not thank them enough!
Up Next: So, right now, as we type, we are airborne, en route to Seattle for another collection of screenings. Thanks to everyone who came out to the shows over the last week. We had a great time and hope you did to. Seattle: You’re next! See you Friday!