Art imitating life? Not at Maverick's. As days four and five of filming for the Jay Moriarity feature, "Of Men and Maverick's," got under way, producers had much less lofty ambitions for the next round of shooting. They had a scaled-down crew because of the shooting schedule. It was supposed to be a lot of dialogue and set-up shots and less surfing. But as the swell filled in and the wind died, Maverick's was about to go off.
On hand were some of big-wave surfing's finest to make sure no waves went unridden. Out in the lineup early was Greg Long, Grant "Twiggy" Baker and Shane Dorian. Dorian faded an early bomb, sliced into the face and pulled into one of the most insane barrels anybody's ever seen out there.
Long got a couple of beauties early, but was saddled with movie duties playing one of Jay's surfing buddies. He had to sit out most of the day watching Twiggy, Dorian, and a host of other notable chargers just murdering wave after wave. Hellmen Derek Dunfee and Ken "Skindog" Collins were on hand as well, and both came with their war paint on. Skindog dropped into one of the heaviest waves of the day -- a solid 20-foot Maverick's beast.
Anthony Tashnick, who plays one of Jay's surfing doubles, wasn't about to sit this one out. He was handed an $80,000 camera and told to catch a bomb, film the surfers on the inside getting pounded and bring the camera back home in one piece. Tashnick, who is definitely coming back into his own, whipped into a bomb on his 10-foot gun and holding a 50-pound camera nearly pulled in. Check that shot off the list.
One of the highlights of the day was when the 55-foot Huli Cat, one of the film production boats, nearly got clipped. When you shoot a movie of this scale it requires multiple takes of different angles and run-throughs to get it just right. On what would have been the last take, the Huli was positioned inside and was motoring out to the channel. A swing set came through and sent the boat launching into the air, giving all onboard the ride of their lives.
"This is really happening," went over the radio. The Huli Cat pulled it and other than some crew wardrobe changes in the undergarment area, there wasn't a scratch on anybody.
One of the key driving points for Director Curtiss Hanson through all this has been authenticity. They will more than likely need to use a bit of CGI to put the polish on, but based on what we've seen, for the most part this movie will be about as real as it gets.