So I dropped my latest teaser video a few days ago and the response has been pretty amazing. I could not be more stoked that so many people are excited to see my project, and believe in what I am doing. So let me answer a few questions that have come up.
First of, the most asked question is when will I be able to see this movie? The answer isn't simple. I honestly don't really know. The short answer is, not right away. The honest answer is that I won't be done any time soon. My plan at the moment is to shoot more through the summer and edit next fall and winter. Not that I am not constantly compiling and editing stuff already, it's just going to take a while to flesh this thing out. I'm not going to rush it, it could be sooner, but I'm not going to commit to a date. Part of the problem is that I am doing this mainly on my own, while holding down a day job and having a life. Trust me when I say that this will get done, I more than anything want to make sure that it's done right. I feel a huge weight on my shoulders to represent the skaters in my movie correctly, and to make sure that skateboarding itself is fairly represented. I am doing this out of love and I really don't want to let anyone down.
What my spare time usually looks like these days.
Next Question. If you aren't even close to done why did you release those teasers? Also not a simple answer. The first teaser was necessary to prove to those involved that I sort of knew what I was doing. It was hard to convince some subjects that I was headed in the right direction with this thing, and not just another dude with a GoPro, (not that there is anything wrong with GoPro). The second video is a little harder to explain. I guess part of it comes down to me doubting myself. Getting input that I am heading in the right direction seems vain, but I really needed to hear it. I also want to keep up the stoke. Since this project is taking so long to complete I felt the need to show everyone involved where it is heading. It's ever evolving, and I want to keep everyone updated. Plus I have so much rad video....I want you to see some of it. I could always use more input and help, every video I post seems to grow interest and has paid off with more pieces of the puzzle falling into place.
Another issue that has come up that I couldn't be happier about, and has required some very serious thought is the addition of professional skateboarders to my project. I have struggled with this endlessly and have sort of come to a conclusion. The main theme of this project is men and women that skate well into their later years out of sheer love of skateboarding. When the answer to the question, "Why do you still skate?" becomes obvious I think it takes away from my narrative. Skaters that have made skateboarding their careers, while still compelling, don't fit all that well into my movie. I don't want this to be a promotional vehicle for skaters that still make money skating. Also many times their stories have already been told by others. I have nothing against them, and it's very hard to not want to shoot with my childhood heroes, it would just complicate things. You probably have noticed that there are in fact a couple of former professionals in my movie already. The difference is that these skaters have long ago retired from professional skateboarding, yet they still skate every day, they aren't household names still pulling in sponsorship money. This I find compelling, and feel fits perfectly in my story. They have no incentive to still skate other than a love for skateboarding. I could not be more stoked to hear from some amazing pros though....it's so rad to get emails and calls from guys I've always looked up to.
I hope that doesn't sound too dictatorial. I just have a look and feel that I am trying to maintain. Granted I am learning as I go, but I need to be sure that everything fits into this giant puzzle.
Now to money? I am doing this entirely out of my own very shallow pockets. Being creative with shooting has kept the cost down, I DIY and bodge together stuff when I can. I am also shooting most of my video on a pretty inexpensive DSLR. I'm also very lucky to have some very talented and connected friends who have helped immensely. I have had a couple of sponsorship offers, unfortunately none of them were serious enough, or appropriate. I am not willing to sacrifice the integrity of my project with kooky brands attached. If you are interested by all means please contact me. I would be more than happy to take your money.
Honestly, when I started this thing I had no idea that people would want to be in it.... let alone professionals ....I had no clue people would want to help me shoot it, would be so into it, would be inspired by the guys in this movie as much as I am. I hope I don't come off as a dick here .... I just wanted to clarify a few things, and to temper some expectation. Please email me with your stories and any thoughts, I welcome all of your input, and offers. Thanks so much for even reading this crap, for watching my videos, for putting up with me in the park with all my gear, for everything. I am humbled by all of you. Thank you skateboarding... for everything.
Ben Rupp, film maker, rocker, skater, boarder, husband, dog owner.
Middle Aged Shred
"You didn't quit skateboarding because you got old, you got old because you quit skateboarding" - JAY ADAMS
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