Ever since it was first announced, there’s been a lot of interest in Wonderkid. Initially that was due to the backing of Ian McKellan, who showed up to narrate the Kickstarter video, and the fact it got a grant from the Kevin Spacey Foundation. It’s also got a powerful message, as young filmmaker Rhys Chapman’s film sets out to tack homophobia in football (that’s soccer to any of you Americans out there). The finished product has also proven a great success, including a launch at the 2016 Raindance Film Festival, and being broadcast on Sky Sports 1 HD in the UK.
Here’s the synopsis: ‘After earning a dream move to a London Premier League club, ‘WONDERKID’ should be on top of the world. The reality? He’s faced with callous friends, a hostile changing room, vitriol-filled messages on social media and, crucially, WONDERKID’s having to deal with himself. The film highlights the key issue – why should his sexuality be an issue?’
There are still problems with homophobia in football to be addressed, with the Wonderkid website pointing out that, ‘72% of football fans say they have heard homophobic abuse while watching live sports in the past five years.’ However, at the same time, ‘Nearly two thirds of people say more should be done to make LGBT people feel accepted in sport. Nearly 90% of supporters say they would be either ‘proud’ or ‘neutral’ if their favourite player came out as gay.’
Wonderkid is now available to watch for free. Take a look at the 32-minute short below. [Read more…]