Documentary Focuses On Surfing Legend – NBC Los Angeles


There have been two sequels to the iconic film “The Endless Summer”, which contributed to the modern era of surfing in the mid-1960s, but the director of the most recent film inspired by it believes there is. another figure from Orange County who will finally get his due for his role in popularizing sport.

“Birth of the Endless Summer: Discovery of Cape St. Francis, which focuses on Dick Metz, the founder of the Surfing Heritage and Culture Center in San Clemente, will premiere Thursday at the Newport Beach Film Festival.

The film festival is back in the limelight following the cancellation of the 2020 festival due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Director Richard Yelland told City News Service that most of the filming was completed before last year’s shutdown and the pandemic delayed the completion of “Birth of the Endless Summer,” but it ended up being add to the film.

“We would have done a two-and-a-half, three-year project, but now it’s a four-year project,” Yelland said. “But I think the movie is a better version of itself because we were able to spend more time on it.

Although much of the filming was completed before closing, it was during post-production that the filmmakers decided to finish filming at the Metz museum, which Yelland says is the equivalent of surfing the Temples. baseball or professional football fame.

“That’s the anchor,” Yelland said of the Surfing Heritage and Culture Center. “That’s why we ended up going back to the museum for the opening of the film. It was one of the last things we shot. It was he who went through all the archives of the museum.

After going through all the images, the editors decided, “This is where it all started and where it comes down to – he started this collection and everything in there that he has a story for. and (the surf legends) are all his friends.

Metz is credited with pioneering the surf shop industry and inspiring Bruce Brown’s “Endless Summer”. But its place in popularizing and revolutionizing sports has been lost, Yelland said.

“He’s a guy who is still being discovered,” Yelland said.

While filming another documentary about surfing, “we found it had a much bigger contribution than we really knew and that was what was exciting,” Yelland said.

The documentary features Metz back in South Africa, the scene of the original “Endless Summer,” and it recalls his friendship with South African surfing pioneer John Whitmore.

“His connection and meeting with Whitmore created the media culture, surfboards and materials pipeline to Whitmore and San Africa,” Yelland said.

“It was just Dick who was there and who he was connecting those dots. He’s someone who could come in and he could be family with everyone.

Yelland said it was difficult to explain the impact Metz has had on the modern age of surfing.

“You can’t quite put your finger on it,” Yelland said. “He’s a type of person who doesn’t exist today. He is one of the last of these native Californians. Folk characters who lived on the beach and lived off the ocean and told stories.

Surfboard shaper Hobie Alter, Bruce Brown and Dick Metz “represent the three pillars of the foundation of modern sport,” said Yelland.

Yelland also wanted to give surfing a deeper context.

“I made this film in a way that connected, gave surfing history a wider audience,” said Yelland. “It’s a piece of history for pop culture, not just for surfing.

Yelland’s film is not the only film at the festival with a local angle.

The opening film of the festival is “Never Catch Pigeons: And Eleven More Hard Lessons from Mr. Paul Van Doren, which tells the story of the founder of the Orange County-based Vans brand.

Others include:

– “Like a rolling stone: the life and times of Ben Fong-Torres,

presents the story of Rolling Stone writer Ben Fong-Torres, who was most featured in “Almost Famous.

– “Doc vs. Parkinson’s, is a documentary about Laguna Beach Dr.

George Lopez’s fight against Parkinson’s disease.

– “Set!” Is a documentary about a table setting competition at the Orange County Fair.

– “Songs of Little Saigon, is a documentary filmed in Orange County that features residents of Little Saigon who fled war-torn Vietnam and became musicians.

– “War on the Diamond, by Newport Beach filmmaker Pam Sullivan is based on Mike Sowell’s book,” The Pitch that Killed “, which tells the story of Ray Chapman, the only Major League Baseball player killed by a throw.

– “A Hard Problem, a science fiction film directed by Kyle Hasday and Matt Stewart, who began their collaboration while attending Chapman University in Orange.

The festival ends on October 28.

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