Artisan Takes a “Step into Liquid”
by Brian Brooks
Artisan Entertainment has picked up North American distribution rights to Dana Brown’s “Step into Liquid” from Top Secret Productions, LLC, a subsidiary of New Visual Corp. The film, which screened during the recent Tribeca Film Festival, is a surfing-themed non-fiction feature that covers the broad spectrum of the sport’s “cultural wavelengths.” Brown’s father, Bruce Brown, directed the 1966 classic surfing doc “The Endless Summer,” and serves as a co-executive producer on “Liquid.” Dana Brown also co-wrote “Endless Summer II” (1994), directed by his father.
“Step into Liquid” celebrates worldwide surf culture, taking viewers to Oahu’s famed North Shore, the Gulf of Mexico, Ireland, Rapa Nui, and beyond. Told through the voices of pros and novices, the film features intimate stories including a man who hasn’t missed a day on the waves for 27 years. The doc includes interviews and action from world-renowned professional surfers such as Laird Hamilton, Kelly Slater, Robert and Sam August, Rochelle Ballard, Dan Malloy, and many more.
Paul Gardner, acquisitions exec at Artisan, brought the project to the company and Steve Beeks, president of Artisan Home Entertainment, brokered the deal on behalf of the studio. Greg Johnson and Peter Newman of Gotham Sales represented the filmmakers.
“‘Step into Liquid’ is an outstanding film that really captures the essence of surfing from both a sporting and cultural perspective,” commented Beeks in a release. “Given the immense popularity of action sports around the world, we believe that audiences will embrace the high adrenaline action that drives the film from beginning to end.”
The film is the latest in a series of sports-related content moves by Artisan. Earlier this year, the company acquired home entertainment rights to Tamra Davis’ “Keep Your Eyes Open,” an extreme sports film which will be released on DVD and VHS in September. Also, Artisan is currently finalizing a deal for another sports-themed project, but details weren’t specified.