As summer transitions into autumn in the Northern Hemisphere, European surfers rejoice; the crowds start to dissipate from line-ups, powerful swells track across the North Atlantic, and as the evenings draw in and surfing after work becomes a logistical challenge, the London Surf Film Festival arrives like an annual beacon of stoke.
Now in its sixth year, the London Surf / Film Festival x REEF is set to take place across two weekends and two iconic venues in the British capital from 22nd September to 1st October 2016.
Audiences will be treated to 2 World premieres, 3 European premieres and 11 UK premieres being shown on the big screen, several of which will be introduced by the filmmakers themselves, with each screening being preceded by one of the finalists of the festival’s Shorties competition. The Shorties is an annual feature of the festival that sees homegrown filmmaking talent from Britain and Ireland submit a short surf film of less than five minutes, with the finalists being selected by a public vote and a panel of judges.
“The art of storytelling is at the heart of surf culture and, as writers, talking story is close to our hearts,” explains LS/FF Director Demi Taylor. “We founded The Shorties in 2011 to showcase the wealth of creativity on our shores and since it’s inception Shorties films and their filmmakers have gone on to make an impact on the global stage.”
In 2016 the long list of shorties that the public can cast votes for (until midnight GMT+1, Thursday 8th September 2016) ran to nineteen films totaling 95 minutes and covering everything from heavy surf on Ireland’s West Coast, a profile of an adaptive on-legged surfer, winter road trips and artificial waves right through to the issue of plastic pollution.
This year’s festival will also feature talks, Q&A sessions, art exhibitions and live music, including a special hour-long audio-visual performance that will see renowned coldwater filmmaker Chris McClean projecting and manipulating his footage to a soundscape performed on stage by musician CJ Mirra and his band.
“We are delighted to welcome so many filmmakers to the festival this year, to share their experiences and adventures with the audience, adding a new dimension to the cinematic experience. For many of the films, the festival will be the only chance to watch them as they were intended to be enjoyed – on the big screen, accompanied by a packed crowd of likeminded, wave sliding folk – the original “social media” experience!”
Demi Taylor, LS/FF Director
The line-up of feature films at this year’s festival offer up something for everybody, coming out of the left field, the future, straight down the middle, on foot, out of the archives, from fact, from fiction, and even including a wipeout fest from the Wedge. If you’re in Europe, the UK, or even just in transit through London over either of the last two weekends in September then you can catch more than your fair share of surf culture here, right in the midst of European surfing’s prime season.
Thursday 22nd – Friday 23 September The Genesis Cinema, E1 plays host to the opening weekend.
Friday 30th September – Saturday 1 October LS/FF moves west to the iconic Regent Street Cinema bringing with it an all new line up of films!
Tickets from £8.50 are available through The Genesis Cinema and Regent Street Cinema box offices. There are also a limited number of evening passes from £15 which include a full night of films PLUS a complimentary beer from Sharp’s Brewery as well as some exclusive goodies, delivering more good times for your bucks!
For full schedule details and info on a couple of very special LS/FF pop-up screenings head to: www.londonsurffilmfestival.com.
INTERNATIONAL FEATURE LINE UP
THURSDAY 22 SEPT, Genesis Cinema, E1 // GALA OPENING NIGHT
7PM: UK PREMIERE: Peninsula Mitre Dir. Gauchos del Mar, 2016
From the multi award winning filmmakers, Gauchos del Mar comes this stunning travelogue, as the Azulay brothers undertake a 2 month journey on foot through the uncharted Tierra del Fuego Province of South America. Presented by the filmmakers.
9PM: EUROPEAN PREMIERE: Sorria Dir. Gabriel Novis, 2016
Sorria or “smile” will make you do just that, serving up an all star cast of Brazil’s hottest talents from Yago Dora and Filipe Toledo to Caio Ibelli, this takes performance surfing to the next level, featuring the eye widening waves of Mexico, Indo, California and Hawaii.
UK PREMIERE: Inna di Caribbean Dir. Arthur Bourbon
Presented by surfer / filmmaker Arthur Bourbon
FRIDAY 23 SEPT, Genesis Cinema, E1 // THE SEARCH & THE SPOILS
7PM: UK PREMIERE: The Zone Dir. Jack Coleman, 2016
Award winning independent filmmaker Jack Coleman serves up an alternate surfing dimension featuring the fins free wizardry of Derek Hynd and Ryan Burch as well as mind blowing artistry from the likes of Rob Machado, Alex Knost, Ari Browne, Ozzie Wright and Bryce Young as they tour through Australia, South Africa, Costa Rica, Mexico, and California.
9PM: LONDON PREMIERE: View From A Blue Moon Dir. Blake Kueny, 2015
The world’s most dynamic surfer John Florence and his closest friends Bruce Irons, Albee Layer, Matt Meola, Eli Olson, Jamie O’Brien, Jack Robinson, Koa Rothman, Jordy Smith, Koa Sith, Frank Solomon, Felipe Toledo, tour the dreamy blue perfection of the world’s finest waves, shot entirely in sumptuous 4K, this film was made for the big screen.
Presented by filmmakers Tim Nunn & Roger Sharp
FRIDAY 30 SEPT, Regent St Cinema, W1 // EAST VS WEST
7PM: EUROPEAN PREMIERE: Fire & Water Dir. Thomas Brookins, 2016
Award winning documentary filmmaker Thomas Brookins brings us the compelling tale of a small crew of pioneering NY surfers lives in Hawaii in the 1950’s, testing their wits in the infamous big waves of Oahu’s Banzai Pipeline & Waimea, with some of the greatest named legends of the time. Combining incredible never before seen archive Bolex footage with candid tales, interviews and stunning surf action.
UK PREMIERE: Surfing Europe: Dir. Matt Crocker & James Dean
Presented by the filmmakers
LONDON PREMIERE: Dirty Old Wedge Dir. Tim Burnham, 2016
The Wedge is a mythical man-made mutant, where a tight crew of surfers and bodysurfers take on the monstrous waves, where injuries are common and where deaths have occurred, this multi-award winning documentary features Keith Malloy, Mark Cunningham, Ron Romanosky Mike Stewart, Danny Kwock, Bill Sharp and the hard charging WEDGE CREW. Presented by filmmaker Jack Murgatroyd.
WORLD PREMIERE: Trip the Light Dir. Oli Adams Presented by Oli Adams.
SATURDAY 1 OCT, Regent St Cinema, W1 // AUDIO VISUAL DELIGHTS
7PM: UK PREMIERE: Chasing Zero CJ MIRRA and Chris McClean, 2016
Having collaborated on a number of award winning projects, composer/ musician CJ Mirra and filmmaker Chris McClean bring their other-worldly live audio visual interactive cinematic experience to London, featuring CJ Mirra’s haunting soundscapes, original scores and improvised performance and Chris McClean’s evocative cold water cinematography. Presented by CJ Mirra & Chris McClean.
UK PREMIERE: Bruce Gold Dir. Anders Melchior Presented by the filmmaker.
9PM: UK PREMIERE: Forbidden Trim Dir. George Trimm, 2016
A very special 35mm screening of director George Trimm’s “Grindhouse, Surfing, Sci-Fi, Horror, Comedy, War film” and featuring the stylings of Alex Knost, Jared Mell, Harrison Roach et al. With classic B movie vibes, with a killer, custom soundtrack and some of the world’s most stylish surfers – this is not to be missed. Presented by George Trimm.