The Movie Waffler Fantasy Sports and eSports Are So Mainstream We’re Even Making Movies About Them | The Movie Waffler

Fantasy Sports and eSports Are So Mainstream We’re Even Making Movies About Them

Fantasy Sports and eSports Are So Mainstream We’re Even Making Movies About Them

By 2024, revenue from the global eSports market is forecasted to hit $1.62 billion, while the global fantasy sports market is projected to grow to $38.6 billion in 2025, as per Sports Pro Media. Growth in both markets is attributed to increased smartphone availability, as well as increased athlete popularity. While these figures alone demonstrate how successful fantasy and eSports have been over the last few years, there’s another indication of just how far into the mainstream these markets are: Hollywood’s making movies about them.

eSports and Fantasy Sports Hit The Big Screen

Like all sports movies, from Rocky to Clash of the Titans, eSports makes for good dramas. The high intensity, the pressure, the diversity of participants — it’s Hollywood gold. Many filmmakers have taken advantage of eSports’ growing audience, and in the early 2010s, well before the industry reached the level it’s at now, we saw films like Noobz and Rise of the eSports Hero released. The latter is a documentary about the sub-culture of pro-gaming, specifically focusing on one of the best eSports teams in North America, Team Evil Geniuses. The film follows the team as they participate in different competitions, and it gives insight into what it means to attain success in eSports. Noobz, on the other hand, is an American comedy by Blake Freeman that follows four friends as they try to win the Cyber Bowl video game Championship.

Fantasy sports also made their Hollywood debut in an ESPN 30 for 30 film called Silly Little Game. The movie looks back on the origins of fantasy sports and tells the true story of a group of friends who developed and popularized modern fantasy baseball in the 1980s. They called it the Rotisserie League, named after the New York City restaurant where they played the first game. 

Are We Surprised? Not Really

It was only a matter of time before eSports and fantasy sports made their big-screen debut. After all, almost every other form of entertainment has welcomed the industries due to their unavoidable popularity. For example, in 2021, streaming giant Netflix partnered with Riot Games and released an animated series called Arcane. This partnership shows Netflix is paying attention to the eSports space, considering Riot Games has been a primary driver in the market’s explosive growth over the last year or so. For instance, in 2020, Riot Games’ League of Legends World Championship eSports competition witnessed record-breaking viewership.

Additionally, this mainstream popularity of fantasy sports sites has allowed these platforms to branch out into other areas, extending their reach and merging different audiences. For instance, FanDuel started as a daily fantasy sports provider in 2009 but has since expanded its game variety. FanDuel now offers sports betting and casino games in addition to fantasy sports. This diversity has allowed FanDuel to partner with some of the top sports leagues and teams, and it has become a fan favorite as a result. Then again, it could be because players have the option to use a FanDuel casino promo code to play free table games and slots online, as per CasinoSmash. Offering incentives like promotions is something many entertainment sites do, and it’s proving fruitful for fantasy sports sites looking to attract and retain users. 

Fantasy sports and eSports are pushing even further into mainstream media, so it’s no surprise to see Hollywood is making movies about the industries. Plus, as the global sports market continues to grow in 2022, we’re likely to see more films of this nature released.