Quite possibly the hottest shit of the year, Teddybear Crisis's debut self-titled release premiered for North America last Saturday as part of the grand opening of Decade's Salt Lake City location. By the time it hit the big screen at the University of Utah 's OSH auditorium, every seat was taken. Some latecomers found balcony-like seating on a shelf against the back wall, while those who were less resourceful stood around and blocked the aisles. Surface Skis picked up a bum and paid him $20 to roam the venue with a cardboard sign…he said the movie ruled.

But before the lights went down, Decade threw out an unprecedented volume of swag. This was one of the night's highlights for kids who could jump high and drink a lot of syrup, but even the more passive moviegoers took home some new threads. "Teddybear Crisis" is the brainchild of two of the most creative filmmakers in skiing--Kris Ostness (Wind-up Films) and Henrik Rostrup (Push Films). Gary Winberg at Helly Hansen had known Ostness was between projects and suggested making a film with Rostrup. "He said he thought we'd be a perfect complement," Ostness explained, "and I think he was right, totally right." The intro was completely unlike anything done before. There was no skiing. No one really saw it coming. It was weird…like a Marilyn Manson video. "When you listen to our name, Teddybear Crisis, it's a duality…kind of soft and cuddly, but then not quite," said Ostness. "We wanted to come out of the door just punching." The guys at Teddybear went to Oslo , Norway, to make it happen. They shot it all in one long day on 35 mm film with a full Hollywood-style production crew…and catering. "We weren't necessarily trying to stand out from other ski films," Ostness explained. "We just wanted to kind of satisfy our own creative urges." Teddybear Crisis spent a lot of time at the legendary backcountry gaps in Utah 's Grizzly Gulch--Upper and Lower Flagstaff, Pyramid, and Chad's. "Kris Ostness is just such an artist when it comes to filmmaking--and when it comes to skiing," Mike Wilson said of the time he spent shooting with Teddybear, "so he's even picking the jumps that have the beautiful, scenic backgrounds instead of just picking whatever jumps he finds first."
One of the most talked-about segments came from Brandon Becker. "It was kind of a new thing for me," he said. "I'd never really hit any high-speed gap jumps before, and it was just super fun." Skipping issues were the complaint of the evening. The production copies of the movie weren't out yet, so the plan was to play the film from a miniDV master. When Ostness found out the venue didn't have a video input for that, he used a home-burnt disc as a backup. The DVD player overheated…and it got to be very annoying. This dampened the effect of some of the rock video tricks in Tanner's interview (the only interview in the film). "You really didn't get the feel of it tonight because the DVD player was messing up," Ostness said, "but it turned out really well and it's actually very emotional." Rostrup used technical imaging tricks to mess up the audio and film speeds while Tanner talked about his season-ending injury. "It looks really surreal," said Ostness, "and with Henrik editing...it just came together like magic." Skipping won't be an issue with the production copies, which are in stores now. "The editing in the whole movie just blew me away," said Wilson . "I thought it was super sick and I liked the soundtrack…I know some people aren't going to like it as much, but I think it represented the athletes better than most music does." The song featured in the crash section was filmed live at Winberg's house. "So those are the actual rock star dudes," Ostness said. "Teddybear Crisis" had exclusive footage from Europe, Scandinavia, Alaska, California, the Snowbird halfpipe gap, Tanner's switch nine over Chad's, Jon Olsson's aerial fashion show, 13-year-old Oscar Sherlin going huge…"It was just really fun to step outside of the box," Ostness said.
The after party went off downtown at Decade and Stoneground. Having just arrived in Salt Lake, Decade is still in the stage of getting the word out that it exists. But with Eric Pollard, Andy Mahre, Anthony Boronowski, and Brandon Becker on the team and a sick online store that's just barely gone live, the word is spreading fairly quickly. "With Decade, we are basically just trying to create a store and an atmosphere that just sort of brings the youth culture together…whether it's skiing, snowboarding, or skating," said Jordan Jedd, the man behind it all. "The sports we participate in are fun, and that's what it should be about…so we want our shops to be a fun place to go." In line with this idea, they had a sale on everything in the store and brought in free pizza that looked amazing. The unofficial 21-21 "golf pros and tennis ho's"-themed after-after party was short-lived. So then there was the after-after-after party… Check teddybearcrisis.com and decadesnowandskate.com .


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