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Savage cinema kicks off with the presence in San Sebastian of major athletes and filmmakers in the action sports film world


The first to arrive in the city were Dave Rastovich and Chris del Moro, two of the big names in the cast of Bella Vita, stars of surf worldwide, who visited the revolutionary Wavegarden artificial wave installation, with the result of the video accompanying this note. We will see them again in the world premiere of the film on Sunday at the Principe Cinemas with its director, Jason Baffa, and other surfers like the young Italian promise Leonardo Fioravanti.

They are not the only athletes who will visit the city. Today at the Principal Theatre, Stephanie Gilmore (5-time world champion) will accompany the moviemaker Andrew Kidman in his presentation of Spirit of Akasha. A 100% musical showing with a sound track of exclusive numbers among others by Ben Howard, Angus Stone and Atoms for Peace, followed by a special screening of Morning of the Earth with live music brought to us in this iconic venue by Odei, vibes and electric sound.

Friday 27 will see the arrival of the BIG FRIDAY “mountain special”, a coming together at the Antonio Elorza Velodrome of the best in free climbing and freeski at a session featuring two spectacular films: Cerro Torre and Into the Mind. Cerro Torre will be represented by David Lama, star of the film and bouldering world champion, along with its director, Thomas Dirnhofer. Added to this, Dave Mossop, director of Into the Mind, brings the most radical and cutting-edge freeski movie of recent times and the multi-awarded All.I.Can.

David Zieff and Murray Wais, directors of McConkey, a mind blowing documentary on the talented pioneer of freeskiing and ski-BASE jumping, will also join this adventure. As Martha Mitchell, producer of The Crash Reel, who will represent this story about life after a brain injury.

A fast and furious, adrenalin-packed week with live music, unique presentations and major events. This will be some first edition of Savage Cinema!


Jason Baffa, BFA in Film Production from Loyola Marymount University of Los Angeles, worked in the 90s for New World Entertainment. His love of surfing led him to the role of Show Producer on Fox Sport’s Bluetorch TV, a position he left in 2001 to pursue his career as an independent filmmaker. In 2004 he released Singlefin: yellow, before teaming up with his long time friend Mark Jeremias to co-direct One California Day (2008). Both feature films are labelled “modern classics” by the surfing community. He recently directed the documentary short film On the Beach (2011).

Thomas Dirnhofer, the son of two climbing enthusiasts, grew up in Switzerland and soon felt the call of the Alps. However, following a harrowing climbing accident at the age of 16, he set his sights on storytelling and filmmaking. After three years gathering experience in different positions within the film industry as well as working as a photographer, he started directing music videos in the 90s. He later went on to direct a series of commercials for various companies and was subsequently the 2nd unit action director/cinematographer for several European co-productions. Cerro Torre – A Snowball’s Chance in Hell is his first documentary.

Andrew Kidman is one of the most important creators of the surf motion culture. Thanks to his films Litmus (1996), Glass Love (2006), Last Hope (2009) and Lost in the Ether (2010), he has opened new ways of exploring this sport, looking at its past, traditions and historical characters. An aesthetic, different point of view to stress the importance of tradition, intergenerational relations and the evolution of forms and materials in modern surf.

Dave Mossop. Director Into the Mind. Canadian photographer and filmmaker, he has traveled the world to capture shots of extreme athletes at play. His photography and films — including The Fine Line, an avalanche education film —and the awarded film All.I.Can, co-created with his partner at Sherpas Cinema Eric Crosland. David has directed and DP’d films of all kind including a 5D hi-resolution virtual-flight simulation called “FlyOver Canada”, music videos, commercials and feature length films.

Murray Wais. Director McConkey. As the co-founder and executive producer of Matchstick Productions, Murray Wais has produced more than 25 action sports films, as well as commercials and over 100 episodes for television. The results have earned honors including six Sports Emmy nominations and created one of the most respected brands in the industry. Wais met Shane McConkey at the Crested Butte Extreme Skiing Championship in 1995, and they quickly became friends and close collaborators. His work on McConkey was a labor of love.

David Zieff. Director McConkey. David has been creating documentaries, feature films and television for almost three decades. He edited and produced the critically acclaimed Paul Williams Still Alive, which premiered at the Toronto Film Festival; Crazy Love, a Sundance nominee and winner of Best Documentary at the Independent Spirit Awards; and ESPN’s Winning Time: Reggie Miller vs. The New York Knicks. He was the creative consultant on the Oscar-winning documentary The Cove and was supervising editor of the multiple-award-winning Metallica: Some Kind of Monster, shaping over 1,600 hours of footage into one of the most celebrated music films of all time. On television Zieff was the senior editor of Michael Moore’s Emmy-winning series The Awful Truth and TV Nation.

Leonardo Fioravanti (16) started surfing at the age of 6 to become today’s most promising Italian surfer. He has put the country on the surf map thanks to his excellent competition results. In 2012 he won the European Championship and in 2013 came second in the Pro Junior International.

David Lama (23) was born to an Austrian mother and Nepalese father and has a natural talent for climbing. Since 2003 he has garnered several titles and in 2008 he was IFCS (International Federation of Sport Climbing) World Champion - Lead & Boulder. Since then he has retired from competition to dedicate his time to fulfilling his personal climbing ambitions. He has conquered an 8c+ and his free climb of Cerro Torre is his greatest challenge to date.

Chris del Moro (1982) is a California-born artist, surfer and environmental activist with Italian origins; a creative mind who loves painting murals, putting his designs to wood and surfing all kinds of boards. He combines his world travels with artistic creation and his collaboration with the Surfers for Cetaceans organisation.

Dave Rastovich (1979) has the privilege of travelling the world as a professional free surfer and is considered to be one of the most talented surfers of the moment. He devotes large portions of his time to combatting ocean contamination through the organisation he co-founded, Surfers for Cetaceans.

Wavegarden® is the leader in wave generation systems, having produced the longest wave on the market. The technology patented by Wavegarden is reliable and efficient in creating waves that never lose their strength or shape. Wavegarden offers the ultimate surf experience to surfers of all levels throughout the year.


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