Watch ‘Cult Of Freedom’ + Listen to the Visionary Joe G. On The State Of Surf Filmmaking
Joe G is perhaps the most visionary surf filmmaker of our generation. And he is back with the Globe team of high-powered rippers including Dion Agius, Noa Deane, Nate Tyler, Taj Burrow, Brendon Gibbens, Creed McTaggart, Eric Geiselman, and Jay Davies.
As Joe G’s filmmaking has evolved some things have thankfully stayed the same. He’s still making art with Super 16mm. This time the EXACT same ARRI 416 camera that Darren Aronofsky pointed at Mila Kunis and Natalie Portman having a good time together in Black Swan. Well maybe….
He talked about it all plus the state of the surf film in the industry.
Strange Rumblings, along with Ryan Thomas’ Psychic Migrations, are on a shortlist of surf films these days that have an enduring, re-watchable quality. Broadly, I wanted to ask you about the state of the surf film. People are always complaining about the public’s short attention spans and the temporality of the Internet. How do you feel about the current state of surf filmmaking?
I think the current state of surf filmmaking is both really rad and really sad all at once. I think people are being trained to watch things for a really short period of time, mostly on their phones. This is rad because you can reach a lot of people with your vision and message, but it creates a rigid and limited framework with which to deliver in. If you want to make a traditional core surf film and visibility is your goal (or the brands who are paying for it), I find it’s harder to justify these days because “the masses” aren’t going to watch a longform piece on surfing. Plus, I actually get kind of bummed on big premieres because I think most people are there to party and couldn’t really give a shit about your film. All that stuff is for your ego. Shitloads of views. Line around the corner. I’m not sure that it matters. The surf industry is strong, though and the numbers of real surfers who are truly interested in going surfing and watching films about it are growing every year. So one of the things we really wanted to do with Cult of Freedom was to do “no-ego” premieres, showings, gatherings, etc. at surf shops, community centers, and backyards just for people who care about watching a surf part. We did a few with The Australia Part and we hope to build that more and more as the project goes on and we get a little network of shops and high school surf teams who get to watch each new part before it comes out, just so we can bring that community together again. And weed out all those guys who are just there for the free drinks [Laughs].