If you purchased a surf DVD from your local surf shop in Australia between 2003 and 2010 then chances are it passed through the hands of Simon Bruncke. Simon was responsible for the distribution of some the best surf titles to ever hit Australian surf shop shelves and counters during that era.
Simon worked with the likes of surf filmmaking legend Taylor Steele to flood the market with ground breaking surf films (Momentum, Loose Change, The Show) that influenced a generation of surfers through his distribution company Aerial Entertainment, which was then bought by global action sports media company V.A.S (Video Action Sports).
As a passionate bodyboarder, Simon has spent the last two years documenting the lives of his heroes, the guys that influenced him as a bodyboarder growing up and that revolutionized the sport of Bodyboarding through the 90’s labelled, The Skid Kids.
Simon and co-producer Trent Beattie are set to digitally release their debut film on Garage Entertainment this Monday 11th April, the first ever feature length documentary on bodyboarding ‘Holding on – The Skid Kids Story’.
This tell-all documentary covers just about every memorable moment in bodyboarding history, from where it all began in the 70’s up until now and the trials and tribulations of key characters that moulded the sport of bodyboarding, with interviews and archival footage from the sports greats.
We caught up with Simon to chat about the film.
Garage: Congratulations on the film Simon, What inspired you to tell the Skid Kids story?
Simon: Along with the Underground Tapes series of videos, the Skid Kids were the reason I started bodyboarding in the mid-nineties and I’ve been obsessed with the sport ever since. I’d always really enjoyed action sports documentaries and I thought that the Skid Kids had a great story to tell.
Garage: How many years in the making was this documentary?
Simon: I had the idea for the movie in early 2010, but it didn’t really start getting off the ground until late 2013, so around 2 and a half years.
Garage: You must have dug deep for the archival images and footage featured in the film, how and where did you source it all?
Simon: Bodyboarding movie pioneer Chris Stroh had the majority of what we were after, but we also sourced archival images and footage from guys like Ian Stewart, Brian Bielman, Tracks Magazine and the cast themselves. All up, there were 24 x separate contributors to additional footage and images for the film.
Garage: You’ve worked in the media space for sometime, any directors you look up to that inspire your filmmaking?
Simon: Early on it was Chris Stroh and his Underground Tapes series and Taylor Steele’s early movies like Momentum 1 and 2, Focus and Loose Change. Later on it was definitely Stacey Peralta’s movies Riding Giants, Dogtown and Z Boys and Bones Brigade An Autobiography that inspired me.
Garage: I heard the film tour was mental, what was the response from the crowd? Best audience?
Simon: Yeah it was pretty crazy. We sold over 2000 tickets to the 15 x stops on the tour with Coolangatta, Avoca, Newcastle and Adelaide the definite highlights. Without doubt though the pinnacle was the sell-out crowd at the world premiere at Sharkies Leagues Club in Cronulla. 600 people from all walks of life hooting and cheering throughout and then providing a standing ovation as the credit started rolling. It was such a proud moment to be a part of.
Garage: Any plans to further tour the film?
Simon: No more tours planned, but we’re hopeful of getting it accepted in to various Film Festivals around the world.
Garage: What message did you want people to take away from your film?
Simon: For bodyboarders, the goal was to have them feeling proud of their sport and what the Skid Kids did to help push it to the level that it’s at today. For everyone else, we want them to walk away with a new-found respect for bodyboarders and what they do.
Garage: What next for Simon Bruncke? Any future film projects in the works?
Simon: This film has taken me away from my young family so much for the past 2 years, so I really want to just spend as much time as possible with them. No future film has been locked in just yet, but Trent and I are tossing around a few ideas, one of which I’m really excited about. We should have something confirmed by the end of this year or early 2017, so keep an eye on the Garage Entertainment website and social media sites for updates.
‘HOLDING ON’ will be available to watch this Monday 11th April on Garage Entertainmant