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“Thank you for not making fun of us,” said one appreciative fan to the applause of many others during the boisterous and humorous Q&A for The Dungeon Masters, Keven McAlester’s fun, insightful and warmly humanistic doc about people who’ve devoted much of their lives to the classic cult fantasy game Dungeons and Dragons. The film had its world premiere in front of an enthusiastic sold out crowd Tuesday evening at the AMC theatres. 

McAlester confessed he’s never played D&D, and admitted that this was a liability when approaching gamers about participating in the film. Producer Phil Hay, an avid gamer who brought the idea to McAlester, explained that they interviewed 30 people and ultimately filmed 4, though it was trimmed to 3 in the film for economy’s sake.

McAlester spent lots of time with his subjects before he began filming them in order to build their trust. If there was something they didn’t want him to use, he wouldn’t. And in a film that features a lengthy visit to a nudist camp, that card was likely played at least once. “Kevin was traumatized by that,” joked (I think) the film’s editor Christine Khalafian, who cut the 93 minute film from hundreds of hours of footage. “He didn’t talk for two days afterwards.” 

Above all the filmmakers were interested in telling the story of people who have pursued a creative life. “I’m fascinated by this concept that if you can make money at something like this you’re celebrated, but if not you’re scorned,” Hay said.

You can have your chance to celebrate the unique creativity and vivid imagination of these gamers Thursday at 3:15 at AMC 10, or Friday at 9:00pm at AMC 9.

(Pictured above from left to right: Keven McAlester, Christine Khalafian and Phil Hay)