Latest project from adventure
filmmakers, represented in the U.S. by Accomplice Media, becomes an instant
free-skiing classic.

Los Angeles—A boy riding in the backseat of his parents’ car
through snow-swept Nelson, British Columbia, has his skiing fantasy spring to
life in a sweetly thrilling short film produced by Sherpas Cinema for The North
Face. Directed by Dave Mossop, Imagination
stars professional free-skier Tom Wallisch who skies alongside the car
while performing one incredible stunt after another. The boy watches in delight
as Wallisch soars over trucks, buildings and RVs, while mom and dad remain
oblivious and chatter about fixing up the bathroom. Sherpas Cinema is
represented in the U.S. by Accomplice Media.
Imagination is dedicated to legendary skier J.P.
Auclair, who died in an avalanche in 2014. Auclair appeared in a similar scene
in Sherpas Cinema’s 2011 feature film All.I.Can
That scene went viral and is revered by ski enthusiasts worldwide. “It was the first time I collaborated
with J.P. and we were both shocked by the reception. It was really special,”
recalls Mossop. “J.P. was one of the true greats in the world of skiing and
outdoor sports in general. He became our friend and mentor. This is an homage
to him.”

While Mossop and
Auclair largely improvised the scenes in All.I.Can¸
took months of careful storyboarding, choreography and stunt
planning. “We wanted to ski on people’s roofs and do all sorts of crazy stuff,
so it involved a lot of knocking on doors and asking permission,” says Mossop.
“One particular scene involved a hairpin turn and it was going to be very hard
to drive with the camera car and Tim skiing alongside. We had to close roads
and get plows, gravel and sand—and we brought in Garvin Cross, who does the
stunt driving for Daniel Craig in the James Bond films.”

Some of the most
difficult stunts were shot from the point of view of the boy in the backseat of
the car. “That was fun and only made possible in the last few years by the
FreeFly MōVI Pro rig,”
Mossop explains. “The driver had to frame Tim in the window of the car and
match his speed perfectly. I was in the trunk with one operator pulling focus,
while a second operator had the camera rig in the backseat with the boy.”
The film ends with
a breathtaking panorama of a ski school where Wallisch completes his journey.
As the camera pulls back from the school, dozens of skiers are revealed
executing leaps and spin moves on adjacent slopes.
That shot, says
Mossop, involved the support of virtually the entire local ski community.
“Almost everyone we met in Nelson had seen the original J.P. Auclair segment
and loved it so much that they wanted to help us out,” he says. “For that final
scene, we put a call out for extras and got a hundred or so volunteers. They
helped us shoot or acted as extras. It was an incredible display from kind-hearted
Imagination has garnered millions of views on The
North Face website, YouTube and Facebook, and drawn effusive praise from the
likes of Ski Magazine, AdWeek and Men’s Journal. “It’s The North Face’s most
successful online film ever,” Mossop says. “We’re extremely thankful that they helped
make this happen in a way that remains true to the vision of J.P. Auclair.”
The North Face was
so taken by the piece, they commissioned Sherpas Cinema to turn the 4.5 minute
short into a :30 second broadcast commercial that aired in late December, 2017.
After a three-day run during NFL football games and in theatres across the US,
overall impressions amounted to over 60 million.
For more
information about Accomplice Media, visit
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