With only 7 days to shoot, edit and produce a 5-7 minute ski or snowboard short film, 6 film crews were chosen to take on this formidable challenge. The pre-requisites are: the film must contain 30 seconds of park footage, 30 seconds of WB in-bound terrain, it must be shot within 100km of Whistler and 75% of all footage must be on snow. Who will take the ultimate title? Be there in Whistler on April 16th to witness this unforgettable eveningof athletic and artistic collaboration.
Shooting photos and videos for over half my life, bringing the viewer into whatever scene I am working with, is my life passion. Using any and all tools available, I love nothing more than tackling a new subject and bringing it to life. From action-sports to natural history and wildlife, capturing images is what I do.
Interview with, Brian Hockenstein
Crew: Joel Loverin, Cam Unger, Dave Short, Josh Lapkovsky, Dan Treadway, Dana Flair, Kyle Wolochatiuk, Braden Dean, Suz Graham, Stan Rey, Colin Hendry, Connor Palahicky, Mike Senger, Ryan Manning, Ryan Patterson, Trevor Karle, Warren Williams, Finn Finestone, Fonz
Production: I was director, main cinematographer and editor. Andrea Helleman was producer and cinematographer. Additional cinematography by Lenny Rubenovitch, Chris Ricci, John Swystun, Tyler Unger, Luke Brookes, Sam Evans, Colin Hendry, Dutchie
What was the best moment from the week?The best moment of the week for me wasn’t a specific point in time, rather the overall just pure fucking awesome vibe we had as a crew the whole week. Everyone stepped up to the plate, did what needed to be done – at the level it needed to be done – worked together as a well-oiled machine and in the process we had one of the best weeks of the year as far as riding, exploration and overall good vibes.
What was the turning point? As these things go, with so much lead-up and anticipation going in, it’s hard not to get down on yourself and start letting the stress get the better of you after a day or three. It was at the end of our second day in the backcountry, which I had spent the better part of being grumpy and generally stressed out – despite having bagged some absolutely incredible footage – when I got to watch, and document of course, Kyle speed-flying off the top of Banana Chute with Cam Unger and Joel Loverin straight-lining the chute at top speed below him. I suddenly found myself unconsciously yelling at the top of my lungs in joy, having just witnessed one of the coolest things I have ever seen, and I knew instantly there would be nothing but smiles and good vibes the rest of the week no matter what happened.
Joel Loverin destroying Whistler Blackcomb
If you could do it over, what would you do differently? Absolutely nothing, I played it true to myself and am beyond happy with the results. There’s always room to step your game up but no use looking back, just forward.
Who was the team MVP?They don’t call him The People’s Hero for nothing! Joel Loverin is the fucking man and stepped his game right up from start to finish. He rode some beastly lines, badly sprained his finger mid-week and didn’t even go to the hospital till the end of the contest and his bail … well, let’s just say I’m not happy it happened but with everything said and done it kinda makes the whole edit.
Which other video are you looking forward to seeing? I’m sure they’re all gonna be awesome. I’m super pumped to see what my boy Zac has up his sleeve; he’s a camera ninja even if he’s a two-planker.
How much sleep did you get?It was a pretty standard week of backcountry filming for me, so that means short nights and early wake up calls but we actually only filmed five of the days and two of those were pretty mellow starts. It’s all about making the most of when you are out there. And then of course there was the obligatory all-nighter edit session to end it off.
Funniest thing that happened? For one of the most badass human beings alive, Dan Treadway is by far one of the mellowest and most hilarious dudes to hang with in the backcountry. On one of our big film days out in the Whistler Backcountry we had so much shit going on – shredding, skiing, speed flying, sledding – that people would have to wait a bit before I could get back to filming them. It was during one of these times when I went to check on Treadway that I realized he was occupying himself with taking in the booter shenanigans of another crew out filming and was happily tandeming the riders back up to the drop-in spot just to be helpful. Usually crews tend to stick to themselves out there but not Dan, he just needs to be moving all the time and almost always has a smile on his face while he’s doing it. (Side note – seeing the top pro snowboarders in the world turn into little giggling fans around Dan is perhaps one of the funniest things I’ve ever seen and happened a handful of times that week. Too good!)
Biggest surprise? I would say the biggest surprise was when I was shooting a follow-cam of some mellow pow turns in the backcountry with my good buddy Steve. I was so focused on the screen/shot, and was so stoked with the results we were getting, that I managed to ride full-speed right into his side while we were both mach-ing down a steep face. We ended up getting tangled up and somehow my head ended up taking a decent impact from his snowboard, resulting in a mild concussion and a bit of blood. So yeah, I guess the biggest surprise would have been from Andrea’s point of view when I rode down to her from what was supposed to be a mellow lap with blood streaming down my forehead.
The Super Spines
Best trick? Our edit isn’t super trick-heavy but TKs double backie is the tits.
Biggest fail? On the last day of big-mountain filming Joel took one of the worst tomahawks I’ve ever seen, in real life or on film. He tumbled lifelessly down a 1500-foot face, clearing multiple cliffs, and somehow ended up unhurt at the bottom of it. It was simultaneously the scariest and luckiest thing I’ve ever seen. And of course it makes for some amazing footage.
What was the plan for the prize money? I’m trying not to focus too much on that part, I truly did this for the experience and with the simple goal of producing something that I am proud of and feel represents myself and my crew – and in that sense (fuck, this is gonna sound cheesy) I already won. But of course it’s fun to dream too. Maybe a little surf trip and a down payment on a new camera?
Shout outs? I seriously want to thank everyone who had anything to do with this project in any small way. From random filmers who I’ve never met hitting me up to join up with a crew, to people driving half an hour out of their way to lend me something for an interview, it’s really amazing how people come together to accomplish common goals unselfishly. And in this case the goal was to help produce the most badass show for the audience on April 16th, full of epic videos that are going to make our community of skiers and snowboarders proud, and that’s something pretty much everyone I know can get behind.
Producer, Andrea Helleman
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