San Diego Surf Film creators and tireless ambassadors of stoke, Pierce and Petra Kavanagh will soon release their second feature film, What the Sea Gives Me. It will premiere on Saturday July 19 at the Museum of Contemporary Art in La Jolla.
The “World Premiere” evening will host a photography exhibit featuring La Jolla’s finest lensmen John Maher, Aaron Goulding and Gage Hingeley. Hand-picked for this evening, these amazing watermen and talented photographers will be on hand to present intimate images of San Diego’s cherished surf breaks, local legends and maybe even a secret spot or two.
A surf craft display from Encinitas-based veteran shaper Jon Wegener will also be on hand – from traditional surfboards to alaias, paipos and handplanes. In addition, the San Diego Surf Film Festival will be presenting a “BEST OF THE FEST” prior to the WTSGM World Premiere with two blocks of screenings at 5 p.m. and 7 p.m.
You can view the full program and purchase tickets to here: http://www.sandiegosurffilmfestival.com/schedule/
In the meantime, we caught up with Pierce to give us the lowdown on What the Sea Gives Me. But first, here’s the trailer:
How did the idea for this film come about?
WHAT THE SEA GIVES ME comes about on the heels of our first film Manufacturing Stoke, which takes a close look into sustainability in the surf industry, highlighting those striving for a more responsible future. Manufacturing Stoke raises a lot of questions and ultimately had me asking myself, “why do I even care?” Well, the reason is simple. It’s because of my personal relationship with the ocean. You can strip away all the glittery distractions of the surf industry and it will still be just us and the sea. You can take it all away and I am still going to go swimming. So as it turns out, creating Manufacturing Stoke forced me to take long look an my own relationship with the ocean which in turn became the catalyst for WHAT THE SEA GIVES ME.
You’re somewhat of an ambassador for San Diego surf culture. What is so inspiring about where we live?
Really?…that’s pretty epic. I’m honored but won’t let it get to my head. Wait, hold on…Ambassador Pierce, has a nice ring to…nah, just kidding but thank you for the compliment. San Diego is where I was born and it’s what I know the best. I am proud of San Diego’s deep surfing family and my stoke from gromhood has never faded. We created the San Diego Surf Film Festival to celebrate what we all love about our hometown. And as far as what is so inspiring, just go outside and share a smile.
Was this film different from Manufacturing Stoke? In what ways?
Definitely. WHAT THE SEA GIVES ME presents a dozen awe-inspiring interviews with some of the ocean’s most incredible individuals. Featured are the planet’s foremost oceanographer, a hands-on Great White Shark researcher, surfing’s leading photographer, a thought-provoking artist, challenged para-olympic hopeful, and many more. We weave these stories together in what can only be called a celebration of the sea. Our aim is to rekindle your passion for the ocean and I think we do just that.
I am extremely proud of all my films but I really love the tone of WHAT THE SEA GIVES ME. I tend to think of it as a love story, actually. Conversely, the goal of Manufacturing Stoke was to honestly scrutinize a struggling myopic industry, so naturally conflict arose, tempers flared, hugs were doled but in the end we tackled a subject nobody dared to address. And three years later, a lot more people are taking steps in the right direction. Whereas Manufacturing Stoke has been referred to a call to arms to reclaim your surf industry, WHAT THE SEA GIVES ME is a beautifully emotional portrayal of what connects us all.
For the premiere, will it have a similar film fest vibe? Do you think it’s important to get people, especially surfers, together in this way?
Similar stoke, yes, but different in several ways. We usually screen at Bird’s Surf Shed but had to change the venue to accommodate around 500 people. We chose the Museum of Contemporary Art La Jolla as the ideal location for the World Premiere Saturday, July 19th.
And yes, it will definitely have the San Diego Surf Film Festival vibe. In fact, because we sold out the 2014 SDSFF so quickly, a lot of people were not able to see the amazing films this year’s program contained so we are holding a “Best of the Fest” prior to our premiere. We will be screening all seven of the SDSFF award winning films to give folks another opportunity to experience the finest in surf cinema from around the world. We have included a never before seen slideshow, a stunning photography and surfboard display, and a few other surprises to make the even an memorable event.
I think it is vital to get people together to view films on the actual big screen. In the world of webclips, iPhone addiction and instant downloads, the surf film premiere trumps all. I champion the independent filmmaker and empathize with all the struggles involved with offering up a part of your soul so I try to do all that I can to help filmmakers present their work in the optimal settings. So far, San Diego has responded in complete agreement.
What will happen after the premiere? Do you have distribution for the film?
After the premiere, we will present select screenings in a few major cities as well as travel the international film festival circuit. Manufacturing Stoke was selected for more than 24 international film festivals, even winning a couple of awards and the majority of the festival directors have already contacted us about screening WTSGM. We traveled far and wide with Manufacturing Stoke but never made it Europe for any of the screenings. We would love to visit all our friends in Europe with WTSGM so I am currently setting up a tour. As far as distribution, we are re-signing contracts with all the global distributors who made Manufacturing Stoke a complete success and even adding a few more to the list. WHAT THE SEA GIVES ME will be available on DVD and on-demand HD video through our site beginning in July as well as iTunes by early October.
Do you and Misfit Pictures have any other projects in the works?
Yes, always hustling.
Get more info on the film and Pierce and Petra’s work here: