Programming Announced for Father’s Day Weekend – June 16th and 17th

As we move through the tenth year of the Florida Surf Film Festival, we are proud to announce the second quarter programming coming up June 16th and 17th (Father’s Day Weekend) at the Atlantic Center for the Arts in New Smyrna Beach, Florida. Passes are now available and don’t forget to check out our annual Green Room Membership, which is the only way to roll if you want VIP treatment with reserved seats, meals and drinks included.

Kicking off Friday night, we are stoked to announce “An Evening with Taylor Steele” following the week-long filmmaking residency at the Atlantic Center for the Arts. We will be showcasing some of Taylor’s work (announcement to come shortly) along with Q & A with Taylor and special guests. Enjoy an extended Q and A session with Taylor as well and come prepared with some deep dive topics. 

Saturday night, June 17th, will start with Turbulences, a new short film from festival veteran Morgan Maassen, Let me Live, Keith Malloy’s in depth look into the life of British charger Tom Lowe, and Yama, a short film by Maddie Meddings following Australian Lucy Small as she travels to Ghana to link up with a pioneering group of female surfers and skaters. Stoker Machine, a short film by Darieus Legg will round out the first set with Darieus in attendance for a Q & A afterwards.

The night will close out with the second set beginning with Malia, a short bio piece on Hawaiian Malia Manuel by Morgan Maassen. Our feature documentary of the night will be Are You Serious by David Malcolm featuring Florida’s own Sterling Spencer. The film takes us alongside Sterling’s recovery journey as he navigates life and surfing with a traumatic brain injury. 

Here’s the anticipated schedule for the night:

June 16th, 2023:

5:00 PM – Doors Open

6:30 PM –

  • 10TH YEAR COMMENCEMENT with John Brooks, Festival Director
  • An Evening with Taylor Steele – Films To Be Announced
  • Q & A with Taylor Steele and special guests
  • Raffle – Roark, Globe, Creatures of Leisure

June 17th, 2023:

5:00 PM – Doors Open

6:30 PM –

  • Opening announcements with John Brooks, Festival Director
  • Turbulences – Morgan Maassen, 4 mins.
  • Let Me Live – Keith Malloy, 18 mins.
  • Yama – Maddie Meddings and Lucy Small, 25 mins.
  • Stoker Machine – Darius Legg with Q&A following, 12 mins.

8:30 PM –

  • Garden Variety – Harrison Roach, 9 mins.
  • Malia – Morgan Maassen, 16 mins.
  • Are You Serious? – David Malcolm, 45 mins.

We are proud to have Monster Energy serve as our presenting sponsor again for this year’s festival, providing travel and lodging for the filmmakers who attend the festival.

Podcast Sponsor:  Surfing’s Evolution and Preservation Foundation

Principal Sponsors:  State of Florida Division of Arts and CultureVolusia CountyRoarkYETISun BumWagner Vasileros – aka The Lawyer DudeCap’n Lu’s – A Health Food Store for Pets,  Anson StonerGlobe Brand Footwear, and Atlantic Center for the Arts.

Major Sponsors:  Persimmon HollowCronin SurfboardsFlorida Virtual SchoolBrian Layman Wealth ManagementRed Dog Surf ShopKembali Board ShackCafé Verde, and Clancy’s Cantina

NSB Sponsors:  Flaunt Electric BicyclesScott Yurchison Real EstateDaytona Climbing CompanyDragon AllianceLunDev HomesNixonMangrove Bay DesignBiological Consulting ServicesDr. Phil Stephens at MyEyeDrFunxion ITPura Vida Bracelets, Beachside TavernSolento Organic Tequila, and Surfrider Foundation Flagler/Volusia.

Media Partnerships include:  Surfline, The Surfer’s Journal, Surf Splendor Podcast Network, Beach Grit, The SurfNetwork, The Inertia, and Encyclopedia of Surfing.

Encyclopedia of Surfing provides our historical and archival needs.

Photos are up from February 4th!  Click HERE!


Entry fee is $5.00.

Submissions for the 2023 festival are open via our website here.

Florida Surf Film Festival Mission:

Florida Surf Film Festival is a 501(c)(3) non-profit, public charity, invigorating surf culture and artistic appreciation by exhibiting contemporary documentary films with surfing as a focus from artist far and wide while also producing a story-driven podcast, literary group discussions, and artistic workshops.

NEW PODCAST: Ep. 47 – School of Gundy with Erik Gunderson

Kevin grabs an old central Florida friend for this episode, Erik Gunderson. They met in high school and began surfing together around 1986, mostly willed by Kevin’s successful attempt to befriend this Dean Moriarty-type character. Erik lived, surfed, partied, and worked harder than the rest, which set the stage for some good times, friendship, and plenty of Floridian surf stories. Enjoy.

Listen to Surf Stories where ever you listen to podcasts.

NEW PODCAST: Ep. 46 – Shoulder Season with Eden Saul

Shoulder season generally implies smaller, playful waves and a generally mellow vibe… In this episode, we chat with Eden Saul of Dead Kooks Surfboards about a different, more horrific meaning. Listen in as Eden recounts the unthinkable disaster in paradise…twice! We delve into his early days of shaping influences, his direct to consumer business model, and his global shaping/travel schedule. Enjoy.

Enjoy Surf Stories where ever you listen to podcasts.

NEW PODCAST: Ep. 45 – Divinity of the Ordinary with Nathan Oldfield

A self-taught filmmaker, Nathan Oldfield has always embraced surfing’s DIY culture—fixing dings at age 10 and shaping his own boards at 14. Photography and then video became his focus; he and friends would take turns, resisting the urge to leave the lens and paddle back out. Coupled with his teaching degree to pay the bills, making his evocative, beautiful films gave him an outlet to share his friends’ stories and surfing. In this episode, we chat with Nathan about his beginnings of falling in love with the ocean, and it’s surrounding imagery, the joys of passing on the stoke to his son, and the beauty of the everyday things in life. Enjoy.

Enjoy Surf Stories where ever you listen to podcasts.

NEW PODCAST: E44 – The Middle Man with Devon Howard

If you’re one of the growing number of surfers enjoying your mid-length lately, you can and should thank Devon Howard for his contribution in creating one of the worlds best riding boards. We discuss his role in developing the Channel Islands Mid, his East Coast roots, and how some backyard farming funded his first ever barrel at Pipeline. Enjoy!

Find Surf Stories Podcasts wherever you listen to podcasts.


NEW PODCAST: E43 – No. 1 Surfer in the World with Sterling Spencer

Sterling Spencer is the undisputed No. 1 surfer in the world, but he took time off his schedule to visit with us sincerely about his migration from early blogger to the very funny Instagram producer and personality that he is today. We discuss brain injuries, Jeremy Flores, Kelly Slater, being chosen as a subject for parody, and more. Enjoy.

Find Surf Stories Podcasts wherever you listen to podcasts.


NEW PODCAST: E42 – Cacao Barrels with Shannon “Hopper” Eichstaedt

Shannon “Hopper” Eichstaedt has an addiction; it’s a healthy one. Big barrels provide the spike in adrenaline necessary to flood endorphins and face-numbing tingles…. We truly enjoyed capturing this super-stoked human to share some stories about his wild times with Andy Irons and many more memories throughout his career as a fully-accredited charger. Enjoy.

Find Surf Stories Podcasts wherever you listen to podcasts.

Taylor Steele Filmmaking Residency – June 11 – 16th


June 11 – 16, 2023

Taylor Steele’s Background:

Apple, National Geographic, Corona, Pacifico, Samsung, and HP computers represent a sample of Taylor’s commercial clients, but some time before, he made surf films.  Named one of surfing’s “Ten Most Influential People” by Surfer Magazine, director Taylor Steele’s two decades of experience and 25 award-winning films continue to challenge and redefine the ways we see, think about, and experience the art of surfing.  Steele’s breakthrough films Momentum, Campaign, and Loose Change of the ’90s established The Momentum Generation, a close-knit collection of progressive surfers including Kelly Slater, Rob Machado and Shane Dorian, who have each proceeded to redefine the limits of modern surfing.  This group, including Taylor, was featured in an Emmy Award winning feature documentary of the same name on HBO in 2018.  He recently completed work on Barons as executive director and second unit director, a television series about the early days of a major surf brand.  Over the past decade, Steele’s films have continued to pioneer the outer limits of the genre, with epic travelogues like Sipping Jetstreams and Castles in the Sky, eclectic profiles like The Drifter and Missing, and social experiments like Innersection and This Time Tomorrow. “I never want to repeat myself,” says Steele, “so each project I try to push to another level. Something that scares me just a little.”

Taylor’s Residency Statement: 

I am interested in working with dedicated, imaginative, curious filmmakers that could work in any film genre. Applicants should be interested in expanding and understanding their creative practice through discussions, workshops, masterclasses, and lots of unstructured creative time. Through these activities, we will develop creative and business understanding skills and understanding of how to talk to crew, cast, peers & clients. We will also discuss the broader cultural context of intention in our artmaking.

As a multidisciplinary filmmaker, I am committed to making artwork that profoundly impacts viewers’ understanding—both intellectual and emotional. I’m looking to mentor and work with filmmakers that combine disciplines within their practice.  The week-long engagement will also include a workshop that will address strategies and intentions to advance your creative practice.

Information about the Residency:

Florida Surf Film Festival (FSFF) will operate a filmmaking residency at Atlantic Center for the Arts (ACA) for up to fourteen early to mid-career artists, chosen from a pool of applicants.

Artists will work with Taylor as part of the five-day residency, gaining first-hand experience through an interactive and practical approach to the art of filmmaking.  While surfing and documentary films can be a focus of their work, there are no restrictions on an appropriate topic of their choice.  Their work may have already been shot in some cases and brought to the residency for further post-production work. The candidate may have an idea in its infancy, needing further work and writing.  Core curriculum for the guided lectures may include topics such as how to develop story ideas, film financing, developing a budget, approaching and working with sponsors, and a practical discussion of social media tools for marketing and fundraising.  Artists may also work in small production groups as well, developing interviewing, research, and writing skills.

The structure of each day will be open to the mentoring artist’s discretion.  However, Taylor will meet with candidates for at least four hours per day for guided lecture on various topics, group discussion, workshopping artists’ work, and demonstrations of editing, technique, and craft.

FSFF will provide a light breakfast, lunch, and dinner each day at Atlantic Center for the Arts.  Every associate artist will be required to bring their own camera and editing equipment.  Lodging must be handled by parents if under 18 years of age, and if over 18, ACA will be providing housing should the candidate choose to stay on-campus.

The cost of the workshop is $2,500 for on-campus lodging at ACA, and $2,100 if you do not need on-campus lodging.  This DOES include a Patron Pass for the Florida Surf Film Festival.  This includes a 2023 FSFF t-shirt, FSFF YETI Tumbler, and Clancy’s Cantina dinner both nights at the festival.  Your room on campus will be automatically extended, checking out on Sunday, June 18th.


Financial Aid:

If you are selected and you need financial assistance to attend, you may apply for need-based aid.  We will require a copy of your most recent United States tax filing and/or bank statements or copies of recent pay stubs to ascertain need.  If you live outside the USA, you will not be eligible for financial aid.

NEW PODCAST: The Impossible Wave with Jessica and Jay Johnson

Fernando Aguerre’s quest to bring surfing to the Olympic Games is a 27-year story. Jessica and Jay, co-directors and co-producers, took on this project to share this story of persistence, passion, and character. Please enjoy our discussion with the team behind the ISA’s successes and challenges to produce live broadcasting for all of these wonderful events. Next up, the Teahupo’o’s 2024 Olympic surfing competition…  Check out the trailer for their new documentary The Impossible Wave.

Find Surf Stories Podcast wherever you listen to podcasts.

NEW PODCAST: Florida Boy with Ashton Goggans

Ashton Goggans has figured out a way to report on a pastime and culture he loves, make documentary films, and create entertaining content for surf fans far and wide. His No Contest and No Contest: Off Tour series are inside looks at professional surfing that capture the sidelong views of tour life. His documentary, Andy Irons and the Radicals, captured the vibrant, chaotic early days of the three-time world champion in a way we want to remember AI. Enjoy.

Find Surf Stories Podcasts wherever listen to podcast.