All photos by Corey Wilson.
After spending some time with Jack Freestone on lo-caysh around Durban, South Africa last week I can tell you one thing: Jack don’t like talking himself up. Which can prove a little difficult when you’re making a profile-style short film about the guy. Now, if Jack’s surfing did the talking? Kid’s a fucking motor-mouth. In the gnarliest way possible. But it’s not like he’s a quiet guy or anything, Jack just genuinely doesn’t like the spotlight “being about him.” Regardless, the project we’ve been working on with him, before and after an injury and CT heats, premieres in less than a month at the US Open. Shortly before J-Bay he gave us a quick sneak-peak of what to expect. –Beau Flemister
SURFING: How long have you been filming for this project?
Jack Freestone: Off and on for about 5-6 months. I say “off and on,” because I got hurt (a grade-2 MCL tear and was out for 8 weeks) so I couldn’t film at all then. I actually couldn’t even walk for a few weeks let alone surf. But the elements did come together after that, as well as before the injury for some great stuff though.
And where have you been filming for it?
Mmm, Hawaii in the beginning, then a lot around home (the Gold Coast), then Bali and now, here in South Africa. There were some really good swells back home on the Goldy before the injury, so we got a lot of work done close to my house. Bali and Java were a bit of a whirlwind, but were also super fun and probably the nail in the coffin for the project.
Who else is in the film besides you?
Pretty much my two best mates, Mitch Coleborn and Mitch Crews. I always want them to be a part of the vids me and Mikey [Jack’s filmer] make. Plus, we’re always surfing and filming together anyways at home, so it makes perfect sense.
Was it tough making a movie — even a short one — while juggling the CT and other obligations?
Yeah, sure. And I’d say this year’s been the hardest to do it, what with the tour, entering some QS’s, managing expectations and relationships, having a girlfriend…yeah it gets pretty hard definitely [laughs]. Then, when you’re injured, it really felt like the project was going nowhere, but then I bounced back with a good result in Brazil and had some little adventures in Indo and then things really came together.
Is this the first profile-style project you’ve ever done?
Mmm, sort of. I mean, in some ways it feels a lot like the short vids that me and Mikey have done, but I know that it’ll definitely have a bigger vibe with it premiering at the US Open. But yeah, I’ve had parts in some of Kai’s movies like Dear Suburbia, and Cluster, but never a profile-piece like this that is a collection of trips and sessions from home.
If there’s any message or idea you’re trying to convey in the project, what would that be?
Honestly, I kind of hate talking about myself or going on about “me, ” so if there’s anything I’m conveying in this, it’s more the versatility of my surfing. I guess pure entertainment, really [laughs]. I’m not trying to prove anything, but hopefully we make something that people won’t forget quickly. Because there’s a lot of content out there right now that ya watch once and are kinda done with after that. Hopefully, this isn’t like that.
*Jack’s movie will be premiering at the end of the month at the Vans US Open of Surfing in Huntington Beach, CA.