2020 Festival is Canceled – Chas Smith to Join Us Sep. 3rd

Due to transmission and health risks presented by COVID-19, our gathering of surf movie fans must be deferred until 2021.  Therefore, Florida Surf Film Festival presented by Monster Energy is announcing the following:

1.     November 13-14, 2020, festival is canceled.

2.     February 2021 event is canceled, and we’re planning to go live June of 2021 on Father’s Day Weekend.

3.     All sponsorships will be extended by 12 months from their original expiration date.

The more we thought about executing an online event, the more we realized that online is not who we are.  Our celebrations are defined by live, in-person events, and you, the collective fan, already have such a plethora of content that an online festival would just be another piñata among piñatas.  And filmmakers don’t get the same thrill as attending in-person with their fans, sharing their months or years-long work.  March 7, 2020, was ironically a huge success, and as such, those films will be included in the 2021 festival competition.

Submissions for the 2021 festival are open via our website here. We will begin the process of acceptance for the 2021 festival all over again, and we will notify filmmakers individually if their 2020 official selection status will remain active for 2021.

In lieu of on-ground content, we have added the Surf Stories Podcast, which includes the FSFF Book Line-Up.  Chas Smith’s new work Reports From Hell is now available for purchase and can be found on Amazon.  We will be meeting Thursday, September 3, 2020, at 9PM EDT for cocktails and book talk.  Here’s the link to join us for the chat via Zoom. Do yourself a favor and download the app on your device before joining… The link won’t be active until 8:55PM on Thursday.  We will record this book line-up and release it as a podcast the following day.

Stay safe.  This virus is no joke, and it will be much more enjoyable to commune without the heightened risk of potentially impacting loved ones and the community at-large.  In the meantime, we’ll be talking with your favorite filmmakers and more from surfing’s past, present, and future.

Subscribe NOW (Sometime, it takes a couple hours for the latest episode to populate. Check your device’s “recent” updates for the latest episode.): AppleSpotifyLibsyn

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.

Principal Sponsors: Roark, YETI, Surfline, Globe Brand Footwear, Anson Stoner (Advertising and Creative), and Atlantic Center for the Arts.

Major Sponsors: AdventHealth, Firewire Surfboards, Florida Virtual School, Brian Layman Wealth Management, Red Dog Surf Shop, Kembali Board Shack, Café Verde, and Clancy’s Cantina

Sponsors: SurfEars, Scott Yurchison Real Estate, Dragon Alliance, LunDev Homes, New Smyrna Beach Brewing Company, Cigar City Brewing, Dex Imaging, Nixon, Mangrove Bay Design, Biological Consulting Services, Pura Vida Bracelets, La Ponderosa Beach and Jungle Resort, Total Vision, Funxion IT, Holistic Movements, NSB Spine and Injury Center, Beachside Tavern, Surfrider Foundation (Cocoa Beach and Flagler/Volusia Chapters), and Hampton Inn.

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

Encyclopedia of Surfing provides our historical and archival needs.

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.

ELBOW GREASE with CJ Hobgood – Surf Stories Podcast, Episode 5

The worst part of being world champ?  Still politely having to ease out at Big Rock and wait for Joel Tudor to call you into a wave.  That’s how nice CJ is…  Clearly, if it were John or Kevin, they’d paddle deep on everyone and stroke into set waves, plural.  CJ, ah, he’ll just slot one slabbing nugg and be good to go…  We always want more CJ stories, but this ought to get you started.

Check out And Two If By Sea on Amazon Prime here.  Also, brush up on your CJ history here at Encyclopedia of Surfing if you just crawled out of a time machine…  Enjoy, until he returns for more…

MAKING FIFTH SYMPHONY DOCUMENT with Chad Campbell – Surf Stories Podcast, Episode 4


“Dirtbaggin’ it” is how a server from The Chart House goes on to win Video of the Year at the Surfer Poll awards in 2001.  The Fifth Symphony Document deserves every bit and more.  It still holds up, and while it was popular at the time, it’s probably better classified as a cult classic.  Slater, Eddie Vedder, Dorian, Hayes, Browning…  The magic comes out on screen… Super fan boys, Kevin and John welcome Chad to Surf Stories.

OH, CANADA with Marcus Paladino – Surf Stories Podcast, Episode 3

OH, CANADA with Marcus Paladino

We’ve dropped another Surf Story…  At almost thirty years-old, Canadian-born lens-man, Marcus Paladino has quickly carved out a niche in cold water surf photography. Hear how he almost landed in Southern Italy, and how Canada’s best surfers have him on speed dial. Hard work and persistence has landed his spectacular imagery on the pages and websites of our sport.

TALES FROM THE DEEP with Sean Gilbert – Surf Stories Podcast, Episode 2

At age 19, Sean Gilbert had no idea what to do with his life until he found himself on the set of a feature film.  From that moment on, he dedicated his career to mastering the craft of cinematography and technical camera work.  From his work on Avatar and Avatar sequels to Pirates of the Carribean, Into the Blue, and many other TV and Film productions, Sean continues his work alongside a burgeoning rental house business called Flocam.  Surf stories buried in that career emerge with Kevin and John.

Summer Screenings Cancelled & Podcast and Book Line-Up Announced

As expected, our June 20 and August 22 screenings have officially been cancelled due to social distancing guidelines, and of course, your health.  Bummer…  But we’ll hopefully be back in November on the 13th and 14th.  We’ll keep you up to date as things develope.

Some exciting news… On June 9, 2020, we launched the FSFF – Surf Stories Podcast.  Our favorite movies tell brilliant, sometimes scary, always inspiring stories documented for the silver screen.  Since we can’t do that right now, we decided to record some great adventures for your listening pleasure.  In both Q and A and narrative format, we will hear stories from local surfers, filmmakers from around the world, and inspiring and/or charismatic folks who have a story to share.  Our first story comes from local surfer and lightning strike survivor, Frank Gilday, as he recounts that harrowing experience and his subsequent journey back to surfing.

In August, we will also launch the FSFF Book Line-Up – This literary/gab-session with the author will include the public in the Zoom session in an open-ended, but probably an hour long, cocktail chat.  We will host our first with Chas Smith, who is dropping his new memoir, Reports from Hell, in July.  Pre-order here!  The date of the first session will be August 27th.

In the meantime, please continue to stay healthy and sane and remember, we are all in this together so let’s look after one another and spread some love and joy.

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.

Principal Sponsors: Roark, YETI, Surfline, Globe Brand Footwear, Anson Stoner (Advertising and Creative), and Atlantic Center for the Arts.

Major Sponsors: AdventHealth, Firewire Surfboards, Florida Virtual School, Brian Layman Wealth Management, Red Dog Surf Shop, Kembali Board Shack, Café Verde, and Clancy’s Cantina

Sponsors: SurfEars, Scott Yurchison Real Estate, Dragon Alliance, LunDev Homes, New Smyrna Beach Brewing Company, Cigar City Brewing, Dex Imaging, Nixon, Mangrove Bay Design, Biological Consulting Services, Pura Vida Bracelets, La Ponderosa Beach and Jungle Resort, Total Vision, Funxion IT, Holistic Movements, NSB Spine and Injury Center, Beachside Tavern, Surfrider Foundation (Cocoa Beach and Flagler/Volusia Chapters), and Hampton Inn.

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

Encyclopedia of Surfing provides our historical and archival needs.

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.

 

Justin Purser Joins Florida Surf Film Festival Short Documentary Jury

It’s our sincere pleasure to welcome Justin Purser to the short documentary jury.  Having taken the Viewers’ Choice – Feature award at the 2019 Florida Surf Film Festival for his six year long project And Two If By Sea about the competitive and complicated lives of twin brothers, CJ and Damien Hobgood, he has more than left a little skin on the pavement along the grueling and hard-earned road of documentary filmmaker.  We look forward to many more projects will his finely-crafted touch.

Born & raised in Florida, Justin started out at a very young age shooting surf films for international brands such as Quiksilver, Billabong, & Rusty with iconic professional surfers such as the Hobgood brothers and Kelly Slater. After moving to Los Angeles, he began working at Academy Award winning production companies A Band Apart and Anonymous Content where he was able to learn the directing process from the world’s top directors. He grew his role into writing music video treatments for directors on music videos such as Beyonce “Single Ladies”, Beyonce and Shakira “Beautiful Liar”, Pink “Nobody Knows”, etc. He went on to write Beyonce’s live performances for the 2011 Grammy Awards and her appearance on the final Oprah Winfrey show. Justin also co-produced The Shooter Series and Richard Brown (True Detective) where he directed interviews with Jay Z, Mark Wahlberg, and Outkast.

Justin was one of the original creators and directors of Maker Studios (acquired by Walt Disney Corp.) that pioneered the Multi Channel Network YouTube centric companies of today. He conceptualized and directed one of Maker’s first ever YouTube talent driven branded campaign (Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino Las Vegas) creating the model on how brands advertise utilizing YouTube & influencers. He is the only director to concept and direct a brand sponsored video (Cosmopolitan Magazine & Nivea) to take number one on the Ad Age Viral Charts with no Advertising Agency involvement beating out top brands such as Nike, Pepsi, & Toyota. He has also directed music videos for major record labels and companies such as Interscope, Warner Bros, Capitol, Apple Music, & Sony; for artists Eva Simmons, Corey Taylor, Jason Derulo, A Fine Frenzy, Bret Michaels, The Midi Mafia, Miggs starring Lindsay Lohan, Mickey Avalon, Taproot, along with a fun little PSA for To Write Love On Her Arms with Joaquin Phoenix, Miley Cyrus, & Liv Tyler.

Programming Announced for March 7, 2020

New Smyrna Beach, FL – Florida Surf Film Festival (FSFF), presented by Monster Energy, will host its’ first event of the year at Atlantic Center for the Arts in New Smyrna Beach, Florida, on March 7, 2020, at 5PM. Movies begin at 6PM. The first quarterly screening will feature new work from Keith Malloy starring Jack Johnson, Spencer Frost, Jack Coleman, and Nate Laverty.  Tickets are $20 for an adult and $10 for a child 10 and under.  We also have our Green Room Annual Membership at $200, which includes:

  • YETI FSFF 20 oz. tumbler with lid
  • FSFF t-shirt
  • FSFF posters (by request)
  • Entry for quarterly screenings for 12 months
  • Meal ticket for all NSB events
  • 4 Drink tickets for each NSB event
  • RESERVED SEATING by request
  • Annual Encyclopedia of Surfing Subscription
  • Exclusive annual subscriptions discount from our partner – The SurfNetwork at 10% off.  Send an email for your discount to kevin@floridasurffilmfestival.com after you’ve signed up.

Ryan Bingham and Jack Johnson for Yeti.  Photo: Jeff Johnson

Keith Malloy, in partnership with YETI, turns on the camera in The Midnight Hour with surfer-first, singer-songwriter-second Jack Johnson, and singer/songwriter Ryan Bingham.  What we get is a master class in songwriting from two authentic, humble, hardworking musicians; one of which happens to be able to ride flawlessly through 10 foot Haliewa barrels.  Check out the trailer here as soon as it becomes available.

A Corner of the Earth is a cinematic exploration of surfing in the brutal northern winter featuring aspiring professional surfer Fraser Dovell who is struggling with the harsh realities of competitive surfing.  Along with filmmaker Spencer Frost and photographer Guy Williment, Fraser throws himself out of his comfort zone to embark on an adventure of a lifetime.  The trio journey to a far Corner of the Earth to search for waves in the wildly beautiful and treacherous solitude of the arctic.  Battling extremes of weather and close encounters with the majesty of nature, Fraser comes to a new appreciation of what it means to be a surfer. Check out the trailer here:

Nate Laverty’s Transition, Volume 2 is set in the rugged rainforest of the west coast of Vancouver Island, which brings the story of professional surfers, Pete Devries and Noah Cohen to life. When introducing a child into Pete’s life changes his priorities, mentorship becomes an important part of fulfilling his goals as a surfer. Noah’s failure to qualify for the Canadian National Surf Team alters his path as his dreams of competing in the 2020 olympic games are now in the past. Instead, his mission to follow the best swells from Mexico to Australia alongside good friends becomes his new goal.

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

Principal Sponsors:  Roark, YETI, Surfline, Globe Brand Footwear, Anson Stoner (Advertising and Creative), and Atlantic Center for the Arts.

Major Sponsors: Firewire Surfboards, Florida Virtual School, Brian Layman Wealth Management, Red Dog Surf Shop, Kembali Board Shack, Café Verde, and Clancy’s Cantina

Sponsors: SurfEars, Scott Yurchison Real Estate, Dragon Alliance, LunDev Homes, New Smyrna Beach Brewing Company, Cigar City Brewing, Dex Imaging, Nixon, Mangrove Bay Design, Biological Consulting Services, Pura Vida Bracelets, La Ponderosa Beach and Jungle Resort, Total Vision, Funxion IT, Holistic Movements, NSB Spine and Injury Center, Beachside Tavern, Surfrider Foundation (Cocoa Beach and Flagler/Volusia Chapters), and Hampton Inn.

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

Encyclopedia of Surfing provides our historical and archival needs.

-Kevin Miller

Florida Surf Film Festival mission: 

Florida Surf Film Festival’s is a 501(c)(3) non-profit whose mission is to invigorate surf culture and artistic appreciation by exhibiting contemporary documentary films with surfing as a focus from artists far and wide and operate featured-artist workshops in journalism, photography, and filmmaking.

Future Dates:

2020 – March 7, June 20, August 22, and November 13th and 14th

Awards Announced for 2019

New Smyrna Beach, FL – Florida Surf Film Festival (FSFF), presented by Monster Energy, is proud to announce awards for the feature and short documentary film categories for the 2019 festival, which convened on November 8th and 9th at Atlantic Center for the Arts, in New Smyrna Beach, Florida.

The rain kept us indoors on Friday night, and the Harris Theater at ACA was naturally vibrant from the start.  Snowy landscapes in Nordurland and Within Reach began the evening and made an encore appearance in Fire on the Mountain, a wonderful production of ski, snow, and surf set to The Grateful Dead’s live performances from years past, generating some pleasing visuals and some great reactions from the crowd.  In Skyline, the local crowd recognized the acerbic, powerful turns of Michael Dunphy, and Kelly Slater’s solid two waves at Ponce Inlet earned a raucous howl.  Ending the evening, the jury was proud to present Jack Coleman’s efforts with BEST SURF MOVIE – FEATURE of 2019.  Zone Frequency presented the artist’s work from the last three years with narration from Gavin Beschen.  Poetry on film, lacquered with innovative board designs put to work by Rastovich, Disney, Lovelace, Young, and more.  Stellar work by a true bodhisattva of surf film, culture, and positivity.  It was our true pleasure to host Jack Coleman for the weekend and share his work.

Saturdays’ drizzle of the afternoon became a cool, crisp evening in the amphitheater, beginning with the work of Hunter Martinez, a stand-out young filmmaker whose work impressed no small share of the crowd and jury.  The young cast was full of talent set to an incredible soundtrack.  Lost in Thought hit the spot for the early crowd.  Followed by a fun run down a river in the middle of nowhere Africa with Go Easy on the Zambezi by Ashton Goggans and a solid effort at narrative film by Ben Gulliver called Boogie Man, a surf-horror parody.

Next, Beth O’Rourke shared her look at skateboarder Elissa Steamer and her journey from Florida to California, through a minefield of youth and adulthood challenges, to a place of inspiring serenity in the water, and out.

Creed McTaggert is an incredible surfer.  Joe G. has the footage.  And we saw it.  Joe is the winner of the 2019 BEST SURF MOVIE – SHORT, as determined by the jury of 11 individuals, for the latest installment of Cult of Freedom The Creed Part.  Our last short documentary, called Beyond Tradition, was also a big winner, taking home BEST DOCUMENTARY – SHORT, by Shin Aoki.  The filmmaker and star, Takuya Tutsumi, accepted the jury’s decision with surprise and smiles, carrying their trophy through the night to Beachside Tavern and home to Japan (their flight left at five in the morning on Sunday).

Finally, the evening was capped by the final film of the year, and Spoons delivered.  Wyatt Daily and Justin Misch accepted the award for BEST DOCUMENTARY – FEATURE for 2019.  The work entailed a breakdown of George Greenough’s influence on Renny Yater’s shaping in Santa Barbara over the course of many years on influential surfers and shapers, like Tom Curren and Al Merrick.  Please seek it out on iTunes in February 2020.

For 2019, we, the fans, must share appreciation for works that attracted the most attention for their cinematic genius.  The most notable of the year are given the Viewers’ Choice Award for both short and feature length films.  Rail Road by Gustavo Imigrante and starring Nick Von Rupp is the winner of the 2019 VIEWERS’ CHOICE – SHORT award.  And your very own Justin Purser has earned the 2019 VIEWERS’ CHOICE – FEATURE award for his dedicated effort to document the careers of CJ and Damien Hobgood in And Two If By Sea.  It’s a tour-de-force on the impact of professional surfing on sibling/twin rivalry and the glowing reign of stoke the Hobgoods have bestowed on us Floridians and beyond.

Congratulations to all the winners, and congratulations to all of the selections for 2019.  We sincerely appreciate all your hard work and can’t wait to see where you turn your lenses next.

In attendance at the festival were Matt Warshaw (Encyclopedia of Surfing), David Scales (Surf Splendor Podcast Network), Chas Smith (Beach Grit), Marcus Sanders (Surfline), Dayla Soul, filmmaker, Scott Hulet and Nathan Myers (The Surfer’s Journal), and Matthew Shaw (Surfer Magazine and Void Magazine), all jurors for 2019.  David Scales recorded an episode of The Grit! podcast on-site that is currently available at the Surf Splendor website or wherever you find your podcasts.

Here are all the winners for 2019:

Best Documentary – Short:  Beyond Tradition by Shin Aoki

Best Surf Movie – Short:  Cult of Freedom – The Creed Part by Joe G.

Best Cinematography – Short:  The Forgotten Archipelago by Ben Weiland

Best Soundtrack – Short:  Aquamantra by Cole Yamane

Viewers’ Choice – Short:  Rail Road by Gustavo Imigrante

Best Documentary – Feature:  Spoons, by Wyatt Daily and Justin Misch

Best Surf Movie – Feature:  Zone Frequency, by Jack Coleman

Best Cinematography – Feature:  Beyond the Noise, by Andrew Kaineder

Best Soundtrack – Feature:  Self Discover for Social Survival, by Chris Gentile

Viewer’s Choice – Feature:  And Two If By Sea, by Justin Purser

It’s been an incredible year, and there’s no way to thank all of the producers, directors, cinematographers, and editors that put their hard work into these projects. Their stories are the ones we want to hear. Adam Steckley constructed our 2019 awards from mahogany, specifically a fallen tree from a 2004 hurricane.

For a full archive of the film presented during the festival year, please visit our website at https://floridasurffilmfestival.com.

We recognize the difference between Best Documentary and Best Surf Movie.  Those who approach the art form by documenting a character, locale, etc. with personal interviews, historical footage, and anecdotal clips will be in competition for Best Documentary, and those movies focusing on the high performance, action-driven sequences will compete for Best Surf Movie. This award will be extended to short films as well. In addition, Best Cinematography and Best Soundtrack will be awarded for both feature and short films, along with a Viewers’ Choice award.

Florida Surf Film Festival’s jury, comprised of twelve individuals with journalistic, cultural, and/or experiential factors will determine recognition.

Juries include: Feature Films – Matt Warshaw, Chas Smith, David Scales, Taylor Steele, Keith Malloy, Nathan Myers, Matt Pruett, Lauren Hill, and Ira Opper.  Short Films –Marcus Sanders, Takuji Masuda, Dayla Soul, Matthew Shaw, Scotty Sherin, Scott Hulet, Ashton Goggans, Mimi Munro, and Joe Turpel.

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

Principal Sponsors:  Roark, YETI, Surfline, Globe Brand Footwear, Anson Stoner (Advertising and Creative), and Atlantic Center for the Arts.

Major Sponsors: Firewire Surfboards, Florida Virtual School, Brian Layman Wealth Management, Red Dog Surf Shop, Kembali Board Shack, Café Verde, and Clancy’s Cantina

Sponsors: SurfEars, Scott Yurchison Real Estate, Dragon Alliance, LunDev Homes, New Smyrna Beach Brewing Company, Cigar City Brewing, Dex Imaging, Nixon, Mangrove Bay Design, Biological Consulting Services, Pura Vida Bracelets, La Ponderosa Beach and Jungle Resort, Total Vision, Funxion IT, Holistic Movements, NSB Spine and Injury Center, Beachside Tavern, Surfrider Foundation (Cocoa Beach and Flagler/Volusia Chapters), and Hampton Inn.

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

Encyclopedia of Surfing provides our historical and archival needs.

-Kevin Miller

Florida Surf Film Festival mission: 

Florida Surf Film Festival’s is a 501(c)(3) non-profit whose mission is to invigorate surf culture and artistic appreciation by exhibiting contemporary documentary films with surfing as a focus from artists far and wide and operate featured-artist workshops in journalism, photography, and filmmaking.