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The Brand New Ben&Jack Studio Blog - Game ON ! The Women's Sport Documentary

Updated: Jun 30, 2023

It seems a very fitting time for us to start writing a blog

We are doing more work in a space we want to be in than ever

Major changes are afoot in the world of sport


WE'RE ON NETFLIX !!!!!!! If you want to skip the story and get straight to the film then please do so here GAME ON - THE UNSTOPPABLE RISE OF WOMEN'S SPORT

We cut a little sizzle reel to go to the broadcasters with. Long story short, nobody wanted to commission Game On. What we now know is a hugely anticipated, watched and loved documentary (And its only been out two days!) Did we all want to continue to make the film regardless of wether it would bring us any financial gain? Did we want to invest our time into a film just to try to spark some social change? Did we want to give these incredible athletes a voice? Erm, HELL YEAH! Having worked with these athletes and with Sue and being lucky enough to know lots of people in this space, certainly Jack and I wanted to. Sue has dedicated her whole life to creating change so whats another year? We packed the van and ventured into the unknown.....

Ben&Jack Studio was always going to be small production company that would create content in the hope that it would make a difference. Well that was the plan anyway! But never did we imagine that so soon into the journey, we would have one of our films on Netflix and we are incredibly grateful for it Game On - The Unstoppable Rise of Women's Sport is our most favourite film yet. Favourite film we have made, not favourite film of all time, that would just be ridiculous

Film Clapper board game on sports documentary on chesterfield sofa
To get Clare Balding was amazing. Completely in awe listening to her speak her breadth of knowledge so eloquently

We have worked with Sue Anstiss for a long time on numerous other projects but excitement levels moved through the gears when we had our first meeting about Game On Sue was very keen to bring the book she had written about old concepts and new hope within women's sport to life in a documentary. Given the success of our last film in women's rugby, No Woman, No Try, coupled with the fact that Sue was also in that film, Ben&Jack cut through the competition to be the number one choice to bring the visuals to life

Shooting started in August 2022. A wonderful interview with Denise Lewis the legendary heptathlete. Denise's experience and insight showed in what would be the first of 40 shoots over the next ten months

We have been happily working in sport, and more specifically women's sport since the start and we don't see anything changing anytime soon. With that said, every now and then you have an experience that really reminds you of why you do the work that you choose to do For me personally, that was meeting Stacey Copeland

female dj  presents radio show
Stacey presenting her radio show. BBC Radio, Manchester

We are taught that heroes play for men's premiere league football teams or win Wimbledon in the men's finals, just after the girls play their little 3 set match I take nothing away from Harry Kane or Roger Federer, but they are excelling in a capacity that was designed specifically for them, by men!

Stacey Copeland is every bit the hero and also happens to be the first British female boxer ever to win a Commonwealth title. She also represented her country in football. On an overcast day in Manchester we all met at an old factory where Stacey gave us the most honest and incredible interview I'll let you watch the film but after all of us were left in tears, we drove home and I couldn't stop thinking about what Stacey had done to make the situation better for young female athletes. 'That is a hero', I thought to myself You can forget Lionel and you can keep your Harry Kane. Stacey Copeland is the epitome of a hero and now we have the honour of calling her our friend. If she can do what she did for women's boxing (and football!) and fight for a more equal world for us all to live in, you can damn well make sure that we are going to do everything we can to tell the story

Four documentary filmmakers in a lift
Going up. Just two legends in a lift, plus Ben&Jack

Another amazing benefit of making this film was that we got to (obvs!) watch loads of incredible sport! The highlights and some of our favourite parts of the film were the two England Red Roses games against Wales and USA. Both games were packed out and the Red Roses were on absolutely top form for both. If we needed any proof that the skill was any good, we got it here. If we needed any proof that the women's team could fill a stadium, we also got that What struck me, having been in football stands since I was 10 years old, was the different vibe to be experienced at a Women's game. And this seems to be across all sports. There are families present, anybody is welcome and there is a distinct lack of bad language on display. I'm no stranger to the odd curse but I would much rather take my two sons to a women's game over the mens! Such an atmosphere. Everybody smiling, everybody singing, everybody welcome. This is what sport is all about

Red Rose female rugby player kicks conversion
Red Rose Zoe Harrison kicks a conversion against USA

Back to the filming! The shoots came thick and fast and both Sue and Jack would discuss where the footage would sit and highlight pertinent bits of audio which we would use to illustrate different parts of the story. With every shoot and every van journey a little piece of the puzzle was solved

Jack's approach to storytelling is meticulous Sue's tenacity and unrelenting approach is outstanding

The two of them together co-directing was a sight to behold. Watching them craft this film was an absolute pleasure and a privilege. Honestly, Morecombe and Wise would have marvelled at this partnership

We racked up a very large amount of data and it was incredibly difficult for Sue and Jack to have to cut so much of these wonderful interviews. There was enough great content to make a few films. More of that later...

Having finished the film, we managed to peak the interest of Netflix UK We are so grateful for Netflix for taking the film. We worked so hard on it to make it informative, truthful, emotional but also hopeful and of course, beautiful! For this film to be on the Netflix platform, is a massive win for us. Now we just hope that it inspires some of that change that we so desperately need to see in women's sport

I suppose we just sit back and watch it happen now. And maybe think about what content we (Sue and Kate are fully fledged members of the team now btw) are going to shoot next

Finally from us, our thanks go to Sue Anstiss and Kate Hannon. These two women are an incredible duo that any organisation would be lucky to have. But nobody can have them, they are too busy making giant strides for female athletes all over the world

Much love 🙏 ❤️


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