Moviegoers during this year’s Queer Screen Mardi Gras film festival were treated to a pre-film ad with more shock value than most of the following features. It was the preview of the long-awaited Gay Games DVD and video.

The video/DVD has been released after many of us have relegated the Games to a mental backroom. Despite this, the ad brought back plenty of memories: of sport, of tourists and of those black-shirted film camera operators who were everywhere the Games were.

For those of us who were on the field in November 2002 the Games DVD -“ with its hours and hours of footage -“ is a must-see, if only to try and spot ourselves. It’s not that hard. Within a few minutes of checking out the different DVD featurettes I had heard my voice and seen three different mates.

The DVD includes five hours of footage, including individual sports features, daily sports highlights, inspiring stories and heaps of athletic arse. Oh, sure, it was about the sport, but viewers hoping to take a voyeuristic look at some of the athletes’ off field form wouldn’t be disappointed either.

Producer Brett Heil from Digital Pulse put the DVD and video packages together, with help from an enthusiastic production team. They gathered hundreds of hours of footage and completed all of the production work in Sydney.

After the production team were given the go-ahead just a week out from the Opening Ceremony, Heil said the crews just flew by the seat of their pants.

I wasn’t sure when we went into the project what was going to come out at the end, he said. But I’m happy with the outcome. Given the set of circumstances we had I think we’ve achieved a great deal.

Heil said he made a decision for the community to produce the DVD, after experiencing the Games in Vancouver: I really thought it would be unfortunate if there wasn’t any documentation of the Games, for all of the participants and everyone who was involved.

 

Gay Games VI, Relive The Experience is on sale now for $49.50 (DVD) and $33 (video), and is available at Hum Records, Central Station Records and The Bookshop in Oxford St or online at www.gaysportworld.com. The Sydney Star Observer has one copy of the Sydney 2002 Gay Games Video, as well as one copy of the DVD to give away to two lucky readers. Ring 9380 5266 on Friday 14 March at 2pm to win.

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