A new documentary that shines a light on the iconic video game Lemmings will premiere for free on YouTube on Monday, February 14th at 12pm GMT and subsequently be available for free on-demand, following on from its gala screening at Dundee Contemporary Arts theatre in December.
Lemmings, which in 2021 celebrated its 30th birthday, is part of the Britsoft establishment. Originally developed by DMA Design in Dundee (which went on to create the Grand Theft Auto franchise), it was first published for the Commodore Amiga by Liverpool-based Psygnosis on February 14th 1991 and has made its way to many other platforms since, including Sony’s PlayStation and, most recently, mobile.
The documentary, Lemmings: Can You Dig It?, was filmed remotely during the pandemic and celebrates this icon of Scottish and UK games culture by speaking to the people behind its original success, while investigating its legacy in gameplay and taking a look at how it inspired some of the world’s biggest games franchises ever since.
Among the DMA team members, games industry execs, media and superfans featured in the documentary are: Adrian Powell (original Lemmings cover artist), Alyson Conway (sculpture artist), Brian ‘Biscuit’ Watson, (ex-DMA), Chris Scullion (journalist), Chris van der Kuyl (Chroma Ventures & Kingsway Club alumni), Eli Mouawad (streamer), Enrique Hervas (Exient), Gary Penn (ex-DMA & journalist, now Denki), Gary Timmons (ex-DMA), Gary Whitta (screen writer & journalist), Ian Hetherington (ex-Psygnosis), Jake Montanarini (Norwich University of the Arts), James Roadley-Battin (Exient), Kish Hirani (BAME In Games, ex-PlayStation), Larry Bundy Jr (TV presenter, YouTuber), Mike Dailly (ex-DMA), Nia Wearn (Deep Silver), Nick Gorse (Coventry University), Paul Farley (ex-DMA), Peter Molyneux (games industry legend, 22 Cans), Robin Gray (Gayming Magazine), Russell Kay (ex-DMA), Ryan Locke (Abertay University), Silvio Micalef (Exient), Steve Hammond (ex-DMA), Tim Wright (ex-DMA), Trista Bytes (superfan, YouTuber) and more.
The film was commissioned by Lemmings publisher Exient and is directed by leading video game film producer Richard Wilcox of That Video Company.
“We’re absolutely thrilled to be making Lemmings: Can You Dig It? available on general release,” said Jamie Wotton, Creative Marketing Manager at Exient. “It has been an absolute joy to watch the Lemmings story unfold through hundreds of hours of interview footage with the original DMA Design development team, video game industry execs and fans. The film celebrates everything that made the original game so special, including the city of Dundee in which it was made. And it celebrates the important place these little critters still have in popular culture.”