SLO FILM FESTIVAL: APRIL 25-30 2024 ENCORE MAY 1-5

RIDING GIANTS (2004)

Part sports history, part thrill ride, skateboarder Stacy Peralta’s documentary pays homage to the brave, foolish surfers who dare ride the world’s biggest waves. RIDING GIANTS was featured on the Big Screen at the Fremont Theatre for our very first Surf Nite, establishing a Festival tradition. Director Stacy Peralta will be back in SLO to celebrate his iconic films at this years festival.

NOT AVAILABLE DURING THE VIRTUAL ENCORE FESTIVAL.

A NOTE FROM WENDY EIDSON, FORMER EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR (2006-2021):

The First Surf Nite.
I’ve always had a love-hate relationship with Surf Nite. The much-loved signature festival event began in March 2006 and immediately became the Festival’s most successful event ever (and still is!), but it didn’t have an easy start to say the least…

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“Surf Nite in SLO” was the brainchild of a board member and certainly an idea worth trying! Stacey Peralta’s great new film RIDING GIANTS on the Fremont’s Big Screen – with Peralta, surf legends Greg Noll and Jeff Clark in person? What could possibly go wrong? Tickets were selling like hotcakes and caught up in the chaos of it all, we kept printing and selling more and more tickets to fill the frenzied demand, despite the fact that the Fremont Theatre had only 900 seats. 

The big day arrived, the surf stars rolled up to the theatre in grand style in a red hotrod and ticketed customers pushed through the multiple theatre doors as a small but brave group of staff and volunteers tried to control the enthusiastic cannabis-infused mob. At some point someone said the theatre was completely full and the Fire Chief (an avid surfer and attendee) was going to shut down the show unless roughly 200 people were asked to leave! 200 people too many in an overcrowded building built in 1940 is never a good thing. We jumped into action, and now faced a mob, holding legitimate tickets and being told to leave the theatre! Greg Noll was on stage by then, entertaining all with his signature string of obscenities while we pushed through the aisles asking people with seats to sit in them so we could try to figure out what was happening. We had no idea at the time that too many tickets had been sold.

Hence my Post Traumatic Surf Nite Disorder. Embraced by our community and hailed as “the greatest show on earth” by many loyal Surf Nite devotees, that first year will never be forgotten by many. From the unhappy mob who was forced to leave under the watchful eye of the Fire Chief that night (they did get a refund but it took us several years to regain their trust), to my devoted family who were on the front lines with me that night, to the loyal volunteers who showed up year after year to assist, and to Tim who used his surf and media experience to help make all future Surf Nites truly amazing for many years after. 

In honor of that first epic Surf Nite, I’m cautiously delighted to help bring back RIDING GIANTS for an encore show at the Fremont Theatre, 18 years later! 

Part sports history, part thrill ride, Stacy Peralta’s entertaining 2005 documentary pays tribute to the brave, foolhardy surfers who dare to ride the world’s biggest waves. Peralta (Dogtown and the Z Boys) documents the evolution of big-wave surfing, touching upon changing trends and the constant search for ever larger waves.

And just a suggestion – don’t wait too long to buy a ticket!

The screening will also feature the short film Beyond the Sidewalk from Jack Smith (Skateboard Historian – Film Producer) and Q&A with Riding Giants Director Stacy Peralta

SHOWTIMES

In-Person


5:30 PM — Bay Theatre

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DIRECTOR(S):Stacy Peralta
PRODUCER(S):Stacy Peralta, Agi Orsi, Jane Kachmer, Nathalie Delest, Franck Marty
SCREENWRITER(S):Stacy Peralta, Sam George
RUN TIME: 105 Minutes

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