Competitive video gaming is nothing new. It’s been around for decades actually. But it wasn’t until MMOs and eSports betting came along that it gained a spotlight presence around the globe – one that often draws the satire of comedic critics. According to ESPN, it’s gained enough fame to earn comedy legend Will Ferrell his latest film role.
ESPN reported that “Will Ferrell is bringing his comedy talents to esports,” in an as-yet unnamed film produced by the trio of Legendary, Mosaic and Gary Sanchez Productions. Writers Jordan Dunn and Michael Kvamme will team up to author the script.
Ferrell will take on the role of a competitive video gaming professional among a team of members aged 15 an up. The fact that Ferrell is 49 (in real life) should be a subject of great amusement in the film, as the majority of eSports pros start in their teens, and retire in their mid-20’s.
It’s expected that Will’s role will be similar to his representation of Ricky Bobby in Talladega Knights (2006), wherein his character drove fast and furious on the NASCAR circuit. He is currently working alongside his cohort in that film (and others), John C. Reily, on a Sherlock Holmes parody titled “Holmes & Watson”.
Why Competitive Video Gaming?
The popularity of the massive multi-player online (MMO) genre, combined with the rise of eSports betting, is likely to blame for the newfound infamy of competitive video gaming. In the past, gamers themselves were the only ones who paid any attention to the tournament sector. Now, as more people are wagering on eSports, it’s gained a much larger audience.
But that doesn’t mean it’s become a respected industry. For the most part, competitive gamers are seen as an easy target for comedians to poke fun at. A recent Conan O’Brien skit titled ‘Clueless Gamer‘ provoked much laughter from his audience.
Jimmy Kimmel‘s version, which satirized YouTube gamers, was equally hilarious, but drew the ire of countless eSports fans who flocked to his website to down-vote the skit.
With that in mind, the creators of the new Will Ferrell film will have to tread carefully as they attempt to causticize the world of competitive video gaming. I imagine we’ll see plenty of jabs taken at his age, and surely the fact that many eSports gamers consider themselves ‘athletes‘. A majority of the team members will probably reside in their parent’s basement, as well.
On the bright side, it’s rumored that some of the worlds top professional eSports teams, Evil Geniuses and Fnatic, are in talks with producers about participating in the film.
The team of Evil Geniuses are longtime contenders in worldwide Dota2 competitions, and won The International 2015 tournament and the 2016 MarsTV Dota2 League. Fnatic is an organization that represents multiple teams in popular MMO competitions like Counter Strike: Global Offensive, Dota2 an League of Legends.
They should be able to provide a great deal of insight as to what being an eGamer really involves and help coach Will Ferrell in his new role, all while keeping the writers from taking their comic literations too far over the edge.