Johan Larsson and Simon Engstrand followed a team of female CS:GO players during Copenhagen Games, to give some exposure to a minority within the esports community.
The resulting documentary, called ”Equal Gaming”, has now won first prize at a film festival in Sweden.
– It’s a recognition that even people who are not into esports thought the movie was good, he says.
The idea to make a movie about a female esports team came from Simon Engstrand. As a long time CS-player, he didn’t understand why organizers arranged separate tournaments for men and women.
– I thought it was a strange phenomenon to split people up and reading the debates online made me non the wiser, so I felt I wanted to view the issue from different perspectives and I thought that it would be good if others could do it as well.
”Our goal was to create a debate”
Along with Johan Larsson, a fellow student, he set out to create what would become ”Equal Gaming”, a 23 minute documentary about Team TacTix and their journey to Copenhagen Games. Now, the movie has won first prize at the Vasterbotten Amateur Film Festival in Umea, Sweden.
– It feels great and kind of unexpected since the movie we competed with is a cut down version which I this is worse than the Youtube version. But it’s a recognition that even people who are not into esports thought the movie was good.
What kind of reactions have you received after the movie was released?
– Part of our goal was to create a debate. If you look in forums and comment fields there are lots and lots of opinions so that has turned out as we wanted it. Regarding the message in the movie we’ve received tons of different reactions, but it’s fun to see people talking about it.
”It’s a very complex issue”
During the creating of the movie he personally learned a lot about what keeps women out of esports a lot of times.
– I feel I recognize why the women want to compete separately. People tell them ”come and play” but they don’t feel welcome. The main problem is that there are too few women in the scene, and I think that goes hand in hand with them not feeling welcome. It’s a very complex issue with lots of things to discuss, but one thing that could really make a difference is getting more women involved in esports.
”Equal Gaming” is now being shown during Umea European Film Festival, and Engstrand is thinking about more projects involving esports.
– I have some ideas I want to follow through that I think could be really good.