One-legged athlete Vasu Sojitra on climbing Wyoming's Grand Teton.
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Interview by Jeff Schmuck
So how's the movie looking?
Well I left right before it was fully done and mastered, but it was really awesome when I last saw it, and it's about 10,000 times more awesome now.
How did the editing process go this year?
It was unique in a way because this year we tried our hardest to have a post-production team with our athletes included. We let them have a say in everything they did and didn't want in their segments, and many of them came down to LA to take advantage of that. They literally typed on the keyboards and chose their shots and chose their moments. We obviously buffed it out a bit for them before hand, but in the end they made a lot of the final calls.
Sammy Carlson & Tyler Hamlet. Photo by Dan Brown
Who made up your editing crew this summer?
We had a really good team this year. Mainly it was myself and Charlie Grinnell, and then we had a couple of other people helping out, like Will Start, an after effects guy named John Detemple, and Andy Hahn, who people may know from Toy Soldier Productions, came in to help with our graphics and titling.
John Spriggs, Sammy Carlson, Dane Tudor, LJ Strenio, Tyler Hamlet and Charlie 'Chunk' Grinnell. Photo by Dan Brown
You didn't mention Johnny Decesare and Tyler Hamlet in that list, so what were those guys up to this summer?
Well Poor Boyz has expanded beyond snow and surf and we took on some projects with this summer Parks Bonifay, Ryan Sheckler and others where we produced shows for Red Bull's Momentum series. So that kept Johnny and Tyler pretty busy, as they were traveling to Orlando, Maui and Tahiti, but despite how much they had going on they still leant a hand in finishing the movie.
Bobby Brown and Johnny Decesare in Austria. Photo by Jeff Schmuck
Right on. Turning back the clock a little bit, how did filming go for you guys this winter?
It went really well. We finished strong in Whistler, where we had one of our best filming years in that area, and we've filmed a lot there. It was so good up there that we decided not to go to Alaska, which was a bit of a tough call, especially for Tyler, who's been going there for so many years, but with the way the conditions were stacking up in AK this year it just didn't really work out, so we got it done in Whistler. We also focused a lot more on urban this year, and we brought in some new guys from the Stept crew like Cam Riley, Clayton Vila and Sean Jordan, and we all worked extra hard to ensure that we had better urban in the movie this year then we've ever had in the past, which in some respect is just as difficult as getting killer shots in the backcountry.
Brandon Kelly, Dane Tudor, Riley Leboe, Charley Ager and Sammy Carlson in Whistler. Photo by Tyler Hamlet
What would you say is going to be considered the biggest strength of The Grand Bizarre?
The fans asked for it, and the riders asked for it...it's a rider-based movie. It's all rider segments, with the exception of one park segment that a lot of different people are in, but we didn't do a Whistler segment, a backcountry segment, an urban segment, an Alaska segment, etc this year. There's only a few athletes sharing segments, so it's basically your classic ski porn with a Poor Boyz theme tied within it to help everything flow.
Speaking of theme, talk about the title, how you came up with it, and how it ties into the film.
Well we had a bunch of ideas for the name of the movie pretty early on, but none of them were sticking, and then when we came up with The Grand Bizarre, which Charlie Grinnell, aka Chunk, brought to the table, it just made sense. We knew it was a weird title, so it allowed us to do whatever weird stuff we wanted in the movie, like creative intros to segments that reflect each rider's personality, and the intro, where we rented a circus for a day and had the riders dress up in costumes and hang out with a man on stilts, a contortionist lady, and a fire-breathing midget. So the name and theme is a great way to re-introduce the old Poor Boyz formula of rider-driven production and rider-based segments.
How would you say this movie stacks up against your previous two offerings, Everyday is a Saturday, which was considered to be one of the best movies you guys have ever made, and Revolver, which wasn't as well-received?
Well you can never tell until you put your product out, and in the end it's up to the viewers to decide, but this year's movie is different in a sense that there's no plot line or story to be told. And I think all the rider input we had in post-production will really help out and cause the fans to like it more, because it was such a combined effort between us and them to ensure that everyone involved was happy with the movie at the end of the day. Plus it's our shortest movie in the last five years.
And on the subject of putting it out there, your world premiere takes place tonight in Seattle. Tell us all about it.
Yeah, as per usual, we're kicking off the Triple Threat Tour in Seattle. We've been doing this show for seven years, and for the last three years it's been the world premiere. And this year it will be better than ever, as last December Greg Strokes from Oakley called us and asked if we'd be interested in touring our movie with the film they did on Seth Morrison called The Ordinary Skier. So we absolutely said yes, because Seth is such an icon that everyone who skis looks up to, and it will attract a whole new crowd to our premieres. So to have him on tour with us is going to be awesome.
Seattle World Premiere. Photo by Parker Hemingway
And following tonight's world premiere, what's in store for the rest of this year's Triple Threat Tour?
It's over 50 stops again, and we've got a lot more European dates this year which is pretty cool. We're also going to have a much stronger tour on the east coast and west coast of the US, because at certain stops we're going to be showing other movies as well, like Weight from Stept Productions, and On Top of The Hood from Sammy Carlson and Nimbus, and both The Grand Bizarre and The Ordinary Skier will be shown at pretty much every stop. So don't miss it!
One-legged athlete Vasu Sojitra on climbing Wyoming's Grand Teton.
It has been truly a bizarre day to be a woman at the Sochi Olympics. One the one hand, news got out that female members of the punk rock band Pussy Riot, who were in prison until Putin decided to clean up Russia's image in the Oympic run-up, were beaten with whips by Cossack police officers or militias, or something. On the other, the women's ski halfpipe finals, an event that owes its existence to a skier who pioneered the right to play for women in action sports, Sarah Burke, went down for the first time in history today. These Olympics have provided more than a few examples of cognitive dissidence, but I digress.
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