It's surreal to believe it's already happening. The brisk Salt Lake City weather that hit me as I stepped off the plane was the first real sign that winter had arrived. And where else but here to host one of the most anticipated street movies of the year? As I chatted on the phone with someone about the importance of supporting "street kids," I couldn't help but wonder how odd I must have sounded to my Uber driver. But hey, Uber drivers probably hear all kinds of wild conversations.
The chain of events at this premiere took me back to my early days in snowboarding— being surrounded by a crew that had experienced intense excitement, camaraderie after long nights, tense van rides, jubilant celebrations, heart-wrenching misses, and fist-clenching kick-outs.
Like any good premiere night, the crew gathered at one spot. In this case, we lucked out with Spencer Schubert's place right in the heart of SLC. He had the ultimate setup: a skatepark slash basketball court. After a nerve-cooling game of knockout, Chris Grenier rolled up in the signature Bomb Hole Cadillac limousine to escort the squad to the premiere in style.
As for the movie itself, well, no spoilers here. All I'll say is that to fully appreciate some of the tricks, I'll need to give it another watch. The video was filmed by a handful, probably most prominently by Jon Stark, and edited by Jake Durham. The venue was none other than "Venue 6SIX9," which, I don't know, adds an extra layer of humor to the whole experience.
Reid Smith's jump clips impressed me, a usually underwhelming addition to a rail rider's part, but not in this case. The homie section was a vital glue to the movie, Krugmire blended insane spots with formidable bails, Jill Perkins continued the tradition of snowboard parts that outdid the last, with some rails that marked a new highlight in her career. Savannah Shinske's spot choices kept things entertaining. Danimals lived up to his legacy with his part. Spencer Schubert, who had downplayed his clips all season, surprised me with some seriously impressive stuff. And as for Jed Anderson, well, you're just gonna have to watch it, probably a couple of times.
After the movie, the crowd moved to The International, where Salt Lake City's flourishing snowboarder-turned-music scene was thriving. First up was Gap Year, a band led by Justin Phipps, and believe me when I say the mosh pit turned into actual fights. Following them was MMH, a band made up of Harry Hagan, Mike Rav, and Mikey Leblanc. Guest singer Reid Smith's crowd-surfing moment was unforgettable.
In the end, premiere season is off and running, we’ll see you out there.