"On any day of the year, it's summer somewhere in the world." Here's everything you need to know about Bruce Brown's ultimate surfing movie.
Everything about "The Endless Summer" is perfect. The motto, the movie title, the promotional posters, the soundtrack, the narration, and the waves.
Can you imagine the world without DVDs, smartphones, the internet, and websites? How would you plan your surf sessions without surf reports, forecasts, and telecommunications?
In the 1960s, the decade of "The Endless Summer," surfing was harder, but it was simpler, too.
Bruce Brown was born on December 1, 1937, in San Francisco, California. He surfed his first waves when he was 11 at Long Beach's Alamitos Bay.
After working as a lifeguard in San Clemente, Brown got a golden opportunity to shoot his first movie.
A 16 mm Camera and a Dream
With $5,000 from Dale Velzy, he bought a 16 mm camera and made "Slippery When Wet." That was 1958.
Bruce Brown filmed five surf movies before "The Endless Summer" was released in 1964 and distributed worldwide in 1966.
So, he knew what he was doing. He was a veteran at only 26.
For many of us, Brown was the first filmmaker to capture the essence of surfing.
With its smart naivety, Brown's undisputed masterpiece conquered the hearts and souls of every surfer.
The cast was small - Brown got on a plane with surfers Mike Hynson and Robert August and nobody else.
Together, they traveled the planet, riding idyllic waves in Australia, Ghana, Hawaii, New Zealand, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa, Southern California, and Tahiti.
Following Summer Around the World
Bruce Brown proved his point - yes, it is possible to follow the summer up and down the world, chasing waves and living life to the fullest as a traveling surfer.
"In large part, what gave the film its wide appeal to a non-surfing audience was the fact that 'The Endless Summer' felt more than anything like a movie for surfers by surfers," notes John Engle, author of the book "Surfing in the Movies."
"The Endless Summer" is one of those films that was meant to be shot. The director wanted to depict "surfers as knights on a quest," and he nailed it perfectly.
It is also the endless search for the perfect wave. It's about living the surfer's dream, finding hidden secrets in the most remote coastlines.
But, did you know that...
1. Bruce Brown never had formal training in filmmaking;
2. Before "The Endless Summer," Bruce Brown had an established working formula: film during the fall and winter months, edit during the spring and show the movie during the summer;
3. The concept of the movie came when Bruce Brown's travel agent suggested that circumnavigating the world would actually cost $50 less than flying from Los Angeles to Cape Town;
4. Brown's filming equipment for "The Endless Summer" weighed 20 pounds;
5. Mike Hynson did the movie to avoid the Vietnam draft. Robert August accepted his family and teachers' advice not to miss the trip of a lifetime;
6. Hynson and August taught a few kids in Ghana how to surf;
7. The budget for "The Endless Summer" was $50,000;
8. The movie was shot in 16 mm and later transferred to 35 mm. The total running time is 95 minutes;
9. Miki Dora makes a rare appearance in "The Endless Summer";
10. There are no cigarettes and wine bottles in "The Endless Summer";
11. Robert August was so excited for having discovered the Cape St. Francis point break that he vomited in the surf;
12. The film originally didn't have audio - the narration and the soundtrack were added later;
13. Hollywood executives rejected "The Endless Summer" because they believed it lacked mainstream appeal;
14. The theme song to "The Endless Summer" was written by Gaston Georis and John Blakeley of surf music band The Sandals;
15. John Van Hamersveld designed the iconic poster for "The Endless Summer";
16. "The Endless Summer" was a hit even in landlocked Wichita, in Kansas;
17. "The Endless Summer" made $20 million worldwide after its release in 1966;
18. American magazine Newsweek named "The Endless Summer" one of the ten best movies of 1966;
19. The first film Bruce Brown did after "The Endless Summer" was "On Any Sunday," a documentary about motorcycle racing;
20. Bruce Brown's 1994 sequel "The Endless Summer II" included scenes of two growing water sports: windsurfing and bodyboarding;
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