“Lost and Found” Surf Film West Coast Premier at Red Bull’s Headquarters


“Lost and Found” Surf Film West Coast Premier at Red Bull’s Headquarters

September 28th, 2011

The film traces back the stories from 30,000 lost film negatives shot of some of the 70’s most pioneering surfers.

The flick features interviews with surfing legends Larry Bertlemann, Gerry Lopez and Rory Russell, to name a few.

At Red Bull’s North American HQ

By Bret Johnson

Santa Monica, CA(Hollywood Today)9/28/11/—You wanna lesson in 70’s surf culture? Do you wanna see old surf footage and hear from the legends? Lost and Found brings abandoned photos to life with a narrative approach to a journey of finding lost memories and friendships. You don’t have to be a surf fanatic or surfer to enjoy this film. The art of these photos, the creation of visual stories, the life-long friendships they captured and their connection with the ocean are enough to motivate anyone to find their passion and pursue it all the way.

The storyline is this: in 2007 Doug Walker found roughly 30,000 missing film negatives from the Surfing Magazine archive at a Pasadena swap meet. After spending 1 year organizing the collection, Doug decided to reunite them with their original sources and subjects. He figured there just may be a story there. For the last 3+ years Doug has been capturing stories that if not told will be lost. Starring Aaron Chang, Dan Merkel, Bob Barbour, Bernie Baker, Buttons, Greg Weaver, Jock Sutherland, Rory Russell, Larry Bertlemann, Bobby Owens, Duncan Campbell & Gerry Lopez.

Eric “EB” Barrett, co-founder of X-Dance and Producer of Lost and Found, intro’d the evening with some thanks and praise. “We cherish the relationship with Red Bull. This is our 7th year having Hollywood Film Screening Series, the 2nd year with Red Bull and this was the 4th and last movie of this series.” Prior to the premier Barrett mentioned that, “the guy that found the boxes of negatives happens to be the director at my production company and my wife’s cousin so one could say it’s a family affair.” The Red Bull footage that started the evening was… amazing! The audience was blown away by the quality of the cinematography which matched the unbelievable moves the athletes were making and the risks they were taking.

Ann Wycoff added, “we wanted to work with Red Bull so we could expose more of our filmmakers to the LA/Hollywood-types that they don’t normally get to connect with and meet.” Wycoff is a co-founder of the X-Dance Film Festival and chose this film for what it represents. “This is the type of movie that shows the true spirit of what X-Dance is all about; it is a story told through art, through film, through photography. We wanted to pick something like “Lifecycles” that won last year’s Best Director, Best Film and Best Cinematography. We give you Lost and Found.”

To paint the picture correctly, imagine the 70’s when the entrepreneurial spirit was thriving, traveling the globe was hip and those with camera equipment shot wild subjects with passion. Like many industries at that time, surfing was supported by the print medium and most of those that took the photographs were also surfers who, when given free film from the magazine, would shoot images and send them back to the editors as requested. The only time the photographers would see a developed version of their image was when it was published in a surfing publication like Surfing or Surfer magazines. Now, imagine the guy in the water doing what he loved to do- what they lived to do- just surfing all day without knowledge of when and where these photos would appear in print. Needless to say there were many smiles in this movie by those seeing these negatives for the first time.

The footage was chopped with a bunch of cuts that keep you watching to see what you may have missed and waiting for the next series of shots. It was old surf film footage and narrative that kept pushing the story along and the stories from the legends on both sides of the camera reliving their everything for the audience to experience. It was surf history being told, explained, shown by many of the iconic figures in surfing as Bertlemann described, “…a pictorial history of surfing- amazing.” This time capsule illustrated the beginning of new surfing techniques and unleashed new moves and maneuvers that came from new shapes and sizes of surfboards that allowed more slashing and carving, putting surf culture on its way to being known around the world. The film has lots of emotion with true stories being told by those who lived it- and not always living in the best of conditions. “The stories are the best part of all of it,” said Gerry Lopez in the film while thumbing through negatives.

Long boards to short boards, short shorts and bright colors. The music set the mood right and the vintage footage rolled on like the ocean has since those days. What was captured in those lost photos were the legends of the surf industry at the most legendary surf spots in the world along the North Shore of Oahu. The production team did a very good job of matching the old photos with vintage video since that was not found in those boxes but had to be sourced. The search for the photographer and the subject was Doug Walker’s mission; his journey unfolds the proof of ownership and the pleasures of memories so the audience can view what none of us have ever seen.

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