SXSW 2012: Danny Way talks jumping the Great Wall of China in “Waiting For Lightning”


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The documentary “Waiting for Lightning” premiered at SXSW earlier this week and told the life story of skateboarding legend Danny Way. The pro skateboarder has had some pretty huge accomplishments in his 36-year-old career, including jumping the Great Wall of China in 2005, breaking the land speed record on a skateboard in 2009 and winning numerous Big Air Gold Medals at the X Games.

IFC had the chance to catch up with Way and the documentary’s director Jacob Rosenberg while we were at SXSW to talk about why they felt now was the time to tell Way’s story.

“We really aim to tell an autobiographical, really narrative-driving film about his life trajectory that has taken him through all these great moments in his life and ultimately to the Great Wall of China with a ramp that he’s created,” Rosenberg said.

In the documentary, the people who know Way like Rob Dyrdek, Tony Hawk and Travis Pastrana would often describe him as being “determined.” Way agreed that he often gets focused on things that he wants to accomplish, like creating a ramp that would jump over the Great Wall.

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“I think that that is a perfect reflection of the fire that people see in Danny’s eyes, where when he has a goal, he is a fast train going towards that goal and nothing distracts him,” Rosenberg said of his subject.

The film doesn’t only touch on Way’s professional achievements, though. It also shows much of Way’s personal life and the troubled youth he had to live with. In a clip from the documentary, Way’s brother talks about how the two of them turned to skateboarding to escape life at home.

“I have a lot of healing to do from a lot of the experiences that I’ve gone through, and I’ve definitely got some wounds still, it takes all those to start mending the past,” Way said. “Having that positive feedback really helps me to feel like I’ve moved past a certain point in my life.”

Rosenberg discussed why he thought “Waiting for Lightning” would be an important film for Way to make. He agreed that it was part of the pro skateboarder’s healing process.

“It was very clear to me that this was Danny’s gift to share to the world of being the type of skateboarder that he is, and that’s the type of skateboarder who really is willing to take a personal sacrifice to achieve a goal on a skateboard,” Rosenberg said. “And I think that the film really does a good job of explaining where that need comes from, and that’s the balance. That’s where some of the darkness comes in, and also where some of the brightest light shines.”

Are you looking forward to watching “Waiting for Lightning”? Tell us in the comments section below or on Facebook and Twitter.

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Millennial Wisdom

Charles Speaks For Us All

Get to know Charles, the social media whiz of Brockmire.

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He may be an unlikely radio producer Brockmire, but Charles is #1 when it comes to delivering quips that tie a nice little bow on the absurdity of any given situation.

Charles also perfectly captures the jaded outlook of Millennials. Or at least Millennials as mythologized by marketers and news idiots. You know who you are.

Played superbly by Tyrel Jackson Williams, Charles’s quippy nuggets target just about any subject matter, from entry-level jobs in social media (“I plan on getting some experience here, then moving to New York to finally start my life.”) to the ramifications of fictional celebrity hookups (“Drake and Taylor Swift are dating! Albums y’all!”). But where he really nails the whole Millennial POV thing is when he comments on America’s second favorite past-time after type II diabetes: baseball.

Here are a few pearls.

On Baseball’s Lasting Cultural Relevance

“Baseball’s one of those old-timey things you don’t need anymore. Like cursive. Or email.”

On The Dramatic Value Of Double-Headers

“The only thing dumber than playing two boring-ass baseball games in one day is putting a two-hour delay between the boring-ass games.”

On Sartorial Tradition

“Is dressing badly just a thing for baseball, because that would explain his jacket.”

On Baseball, In A Nutshell

“Baseball is a f-cked up sport, and I want you to know it.”

Learn more about Charles in the behind-the-scenes video below.

And if you were born before the late ’80s and want to know what the kids think about Baseball, watch Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

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Crown Jules

Amanda Peet FTW on Brockmire

Amanda Peet brings it on Brockmire Wednesday at 10P on IFC.

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GIFS via Giphy

On Brockmire, Jules is the unexpected yin to Jim Brockmire’s yang. Which is saying a lot, because Brockmire’s yang is way out there. Played by Amanda Peet, Jules is hard-drinking, truth-spewing, baseball-loving…everything Brockmire is, and perhaps what he never expected to encounter in another human.

“We’re the same level of functional alcoholic.”

But Jules takes that commonality and transforms it into something special: a new beginning. A new beginning for failing minor league baseball team “The Frackers”, who suddenly about-face into a winning streak; and a new beginning for Brockmire, whose life gets a jumpstart when Jules lures him back to baseball. As for herself, her unexpected connection with Brockmire gives her own life a surprising and much needed goose.

“You’re a Goddamn Disaster and you’re starting To look good to me.”

This palpable dynamic adds depth and complexity to the narrative and pushes the series far beyond expected comedy. See for yourself in this behind-the-scenes video (and brace yourself for a unforgettable description of Brockmire’s genitals)…

Want more about Amanda Peet? She’s all over the place, and has even penned a recent self-reflective piece in the New York Times.

And of course you can watch the Jim-Jules relationship hysterically unfold in new episodes of Brockmire, every Wednesday at 10PM on IFC.

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Draught Pick

Sam Adams “Keeps It Brockmire”

All New Brockmire airs Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

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From baseball to beer, Jim Brockmire calls ’em like he sees ’em.


It’s no wonder at all, then, that Sam Adams would reach out to Brockmire to be their shockingly-honest (and inevitably short-term) new spokesperson. Unscripted and unrestrained, he’ll talk straight about Sam—and we’ll take his word. Check out this new testimonial for proof:

See more Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC, presented by Samuel Adams. Good f***** beer.

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