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He tells Doris that it feels like someone else’s rules, these 40-hour work weeks and 30-year mortgages and freshly-mowed lawns.
She tells him that diving and surfing won’t put three kids through college. “Diving and surfing is college,” he counters.
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He stops at the edge of a dramatic cliff. Below, giant swells stack to the horizon. Thundering waves explode across the bay, blanketed by ominous salt spray. Jeff takes it all in with wide eyes. His mother arrives. “Wow! Your father was out there?” she asks. Jeff is awestruck and speechless.

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“You may not know it now,” he says, “but what happens on the field will influence the rest of your life.”
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Hakman, you're fired from the team!
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“You’re too young to be a sissy,” she says. He tells her, in childspeak, that his father has set an impossible standard, and that he wants more than anything to earn his respect.
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The door bursts open and in walks Harry, with a junior-size surfboard under his arm. He presents it to Jeff.
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Sheer terror in little Jeff’s eyes as he scratches for the horizon. He narrowly makes it over the first wave. But the second, bigger wave is already cresting. It sucks him up the face and over the falls, backward, ripping the board from his hands. Jeff is ragdolled underwater. After a long hold-down he surfaces gasping, coughing, and crying. Harry is right there. He scoops him onto his board. “I got you, Jeff. You’re going to be okay.”
The Mr Sunset Story takes place between 1956 and 1970, a period in which Jeff Hakman, the sport of surfing, and the world at large experienced dramatic change.
At the heart of this film lies a boy, a very small boy that did not fit in. Born in the white picket fences of late 50’s Southern California manufactured American dream, Jeff Hakman, all 4’10’’ of him , did not fit in. They fired him from the football team. So be it. He became a surfer. Riding waves four stories high at Waimea Bay in Hawaii at 14, and, unbelievably, world champion at 17, Hakman came of age as surfing first gained commercial recognition. His coming of age took place in the late Sixties: rebelliously explosive testing of all norms.


Backdrop Hawaii and California in the 60 and 70s was an important transitional era within the surf world. The influence of its fluid style, raw purity, and renegade spirit can be seen today throughout our culture, extending into major fashion houses, graphic design, illustration, music, and attitudes about both the environment and freedom.




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...off they go, from the upscale, creature comforts of Palos Verdes to the back-to-nature lifestyle of Makaha.
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“I want a proper house, I want a tennis club, and I want the kids in a decent school!”
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“All the guys at school have cool names:
Bird, Scooter Boy, Mongoose, Buttons...
Why’d I have to get stuck with plain old Jeff?”
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Jeff is ostracized not because he’s a poor athlete, but because of his skin color, which manifests in a quiet determination.
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Fights and drugs are rampant.
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The standard of education is a joke -
students bully the teachers, homework never gets done.
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Punahou exposes him to wealth, status, power. For the first time in his life, Jeff becomes aware of his family’s modest place in the world.
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It becomes apparent to Jeff that his ticket to survival in Hawaii is through surfing.
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Sunset Beach is a big, powerful, mysterious wave that to this day is one of the surfing world’s great stages.
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The waves are mountainous, and the lineup is the size of a football field. The surfers snicker at Jeff—kids don’t surf big waves.
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Jeff Hakman, 4’10”, 14-years-old, the youngest surfer in history to ride waves of this scale, hops up and charges down the face. He looks tiny against the massive wall of water.
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Congratulations, Mr. Hakman. You have been selected to compete in the inaugural Duke Kahanamoku Invitational...
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Dick introduces Jeff and Jock to yoga and a specific breathing technique to slow the heart rate. He speaks poetically about an ‘Involvement’ style of surfing, in which the rider becomes “one with the wave.”
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“There’s a big responsibility in owning a gun, adds Dick.
“What do you mean?” asks Jeff.
“Well, now you’ve got no excuse.”
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Overnight, he’s made surfing’s big leagues, and his life will never be the same again.
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Post-surf session, buzzing with adrenaline, Jeff smokes pot for the first time.
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Over the phone, Jeff’s mother informs him that a letter has arrived from the Draft Board.
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The surf world morphs from Endless Summer/ Beach Boys innocence to Cosmic Children/Jimi Hendrix psychedelia.
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Plastic Fantastic, Jeff quickly learns, is a major player in the fledgling drug smuggling business.
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They surf early mornings together, experiment with the new ‘pocket rockets’ (short, sleek boards), and smoke lots of pot.
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LSD is rampant -- they trip nearly everyday.
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...the locals shower the traveling pros in parties, drugs, and upscale women. Jeff is introduced to cocaine, and nearly has a heart attack
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Jackie, who’s landed on their doorstep after going missing for three days. Jackie has a faraway look in his eyes and can hardly speak a sentence. It’s clear that he’s done way too much acid. After days of trying to help him, they realize he’s too far gone. He never comes back. Within a year, he will be in an institution.
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Jeff and Chappy are offered $1000 to drive a car carrying hashish through the U.S./Mexico border
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“Trust me, Jeff, this worka-jerka will kill you faster than any clean-up set at Waimea.”
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“So what’s the plan?” asks Jeff.
“No plan, brah. We get a drink and check things out.”
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In line to pass the border checkpoint, hash-packed surfboards strapped to the roof, Chappy sniffs. “Do you smell hash?”
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“We go to Thailand. We buy 100 kilos of high-grade pot. There’s this army base in Pattaya Beach where they allow American expats to use their post office. Who’s going to suspect a shitload of pot coming out of a U.S. military base?”
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“Are you carrying marijuana?”
Without missing a beat, Buddy Boy replies. “Marijuana? You kiddin’? I wouldn’t shoot that stuff in my veins for a million bucks!”
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Jeff and Bruce are frisked, cuffed, and tossed into separate cars. “Okay asswipe,” the driver of the Cutlass shouts at Jeff, “Start talkin’.”
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The following morning, Jeff’s mother opens the front door and picks up the newspaper. “2 SUNSET BEACH MEN HELD IN POT SALE,” reads the headline. Underneath, a photo of Jeff and Bruce. “Harry!” she calls out. “HARRY!”
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A Surfer magazine journalist interviews Jeff. He asks about the case and Jeff gives him a grim account. He is remorseful, apologetic. “It’s like I’ve contracted a terminal disease and I have only a couple months left to live.
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“Wha--?” asks Jeff.
“Jeff, you’re a free man!”
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Now I know what’s really important: family, friends, surfing.” He reflects on the big moments in his life. He says that he can’t wait for the Duke Invitational, which he’s been training for, and which falls one week before his arraignment.
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“If you ever let me back into that contest,” he says, “I swear to God I’m going to win it.”
Jeff HakmanDick Brewer
Duke Kahanamoku
Kimo Wilder McVay


The Shortboard Revolution






Jeff Hakman
Text by Matt Warshaw from "The Encyclopedia of Surfing"

Smiling power surfer from Oahu, Hawaii; the sports most successful pro during the early and mid seventies and co-founder of Quiksilver USA. Hakman was born in 1948 in Redondo Beach, in southwest Los Angeles County, the son of an aeronautical engineer, and raised in nearby Palos Verdes. His early years in the sport were marked by a dazzling combination of talent and good fortune: his surfing father bought him a beautiful new 7'11'' balsa Velzy-Jacobs board when he was 8, taught him how to ride, and later insisted that Jeff cut school to join him for day trips up and down the coast. In 1960, when Hakman was 12, the family moved to Oahu, Hawaii; he was soon getting free boards from master shaper DickBrewer and the following year, at age 13, he rode Waimea bay for the first time and had a movie stealing cameo in the John Severson surf movie Angry Sea. During his high school years, Hakman had Peter Cole for Algebra and Fred Van Dyke for Science- both were pioneering big waves surfers on Oahu's North shore and remained line up fixtures at sunset beach and Waimea.

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Hakman was the youngest (17) and the smallest (5’4", 125 pounds) invitee to the inaugural Duke Kahanamoku Invitational in 1965, held at Sunset; he nonetheless won the event going away, beating surfers like Mike Doyle, Paul Strauch, Fred Hemmings and Mickey Dora. Hakman had no big contest wins over the next 4 years, but his surfing continued to progress during the late 60s short board revolution and by 1970 he'd developed the ultimate form-follows-function riding style: feet cemented to the deck of his board, knees opened, weight low and shifted back slightly onto an over developed rear thighs (he was nicknamed "surf muscle”), back and shoulders slightly hunched, chin tucked down toward his left shoulder. Hakman's outstretched hands waved slightly to some inner rhythm as he rode, and a smile often played over his features.

Few surfers have ever looked so joyous in the water. The lines he drew were more precise than innovative but his mastery was complete and he could ride for hours sometime days without falling off his board. International surf competitions began offering modest but encouraging cash prizes in the early 70's, and while Hakman, Jerry Lopez, Barry Kanaiaupuni and Reno Abellira, all from Hawaii were more or less held in equal esteem as the period's top riders, Hakman's consistency brought him the lion's share of first-place checks. He won the Duke contest in 1970 and 1971 and the inaugural pipeline Masters in 1971; in 1972 he won the Hang Ten American Pro and the Gunston 500; in 1973 he again won the American Pro. In the 1974 Smirnoff-held in 30' surf at Waimea bay and regarded still as a benchmark in big wave competition- he finished second by a fraction of a point to Abellira. In 1976, at age 26, in what amounted to his professional surfing farewell, he became the first non-Australian to win the prestigious Bells event in Victoria. Hakman had by that time developed a drug problem. He'd traveled to Australia with three ounces of cocaine glassed inside the hollowed-out fin of his contest board, with the idea that he would barter coke for heroin once he arrived, heroin at the time being far less in Australia than America. Hakman was in fact loaded when he won the 1976 Bells event. Nevertheless, he recognized a business opportunity in the form of a new, well-fitting Australian-made brand of trunks called Quiksilver, and before the contest was over had had secured the Quiksilver USA manufacturing license. Hakman made a small fortune with Quiksilver, sold company shares to buy drugs, lost his money and the company license and was reduced to working as a surf shop clerk. He was high during the birth of his son in 1982, and not long afterward contracted Hepatitis from sharing a needle with another surfer. Quiksilver, surprisingly, gave him another chance as a founding partner in their new French-based European office in 1984 but Hakman was demoted to special projects manager after spending company money on drugs. In 1990 he spent six weeks in a high-end rehab clinic outside of London, and as of 2003 remained drug-free. Long-term drug use seemed to have little or no-effect on Hakman's health and fitness, and in his 50's remained one of the most dynamic surfers of his age group.

Hakman was the top vote getter in the Big Wave category in the 1966 International Surfing Magazine Hall of Fame Awards. He appeared in more than two dozen surf movies in the 60's and 70's, including Inside Out (1965), Golden Breed (1968), Cosmic Children (1970), Five Summer Stories (1972), A Sea For Yourself (1973), and Super Sessions (1975). He was also featured on Biographies, a 2001 Outdoor Life Network cable TV series. Mr. Sunset: the Jeff Hakman Story, a biography written by surf journalist Phil Jaratt, was published in 1997; in 2000 Hakman was featured in a lengthy Outside magazine profile titled "Mr. Sunset Rides Again". Hakman is married and has two children, and works as Marketing director for Quiksilver Europe.
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Dick Brewer

Self-proclaimed shaping guru, Brewer built boards for the world’s best surfers in the ‘60s and ‘70s. Based in Hawaii, he was at the forefront of the late-‘60s Shortboard Revolution and an advocate of Eastern meditation, vegetarianism, and psychedelic exploration. He is regarded as one of the most influential surfboard shapers of all time, and presently builds board for renowned big wave surfer Laird Hamilton.
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Duke Kahanamoku

Universally recognized as the ‘Father of Modern Surfing’, Duke was an ambassador, an actor, a five-time Olympic medalist in swimming, and surfing’s greatest missionary.





Jock Sutherland
by Matt Warshaw from "The Encyclopedia of Surfing"

Quirky switchfoot surfer from Haleiwa, Hawaii; winner of the 1967 Duke Kahanamoku invitational, and the first tuberiding virtuoso of the shortboard era.
Sutherland was born (1948) in Long Beach, California, the son of a fisherman and WWII navy officer. The Sutherlands moved to North Shore of Oahu, Hawaii in 1952, and Jock began surfing in 1956 at age 8; at 17 he was finalist in the 1965 Duke event .
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Just days later, Sutherland was caught in traffic and missed the opening 40 minutes of the juniors division finals in the Mahaka International; paddling out with only 15 minutes left, he blitzed the lineup to gain his five-wave minimum and finished runner-up to David Nuuhiwa by a single point.

In the 1966 World Surfing Championships held in San Diego, California Sutherland finished second to Australian Nat Young. A few months later he won the small-wave division of the 1967 Peru International and in December of that year won the Duke. (He was featured prominently in ABC’s coverage of the 1968 Duke, and a violent Sutherland wipe-out from that year’s event was later used the Wide World of Sports opening credits to illustrate “the agony of defeat”.) He also won the Hawaiian State Championships three times, from 1967 to 1969.But it wasn’t competition results that elevated Sutherland to the Top spot of Surfer magazine’s 1969 Readers Poll Award; it was his newly honed skills as a tuberider, especially at Pipeline in Hawaii.

The late-60’s shortboard revolution with board sizes dropping quickly from 10 feet to 7 feet played to Sutherland’s strengths. He’d long been the world’s best switchfoot surfer, able to perform difficult maneuvers with either foot forward but he’d never been particularly fluid, riding in a splay-legged stance with a rigid back, arms nearly locked in position. The short surfboards loosened up Sutherland’s style, and he developed an efficient new way to get inside the tube, by stalling and angling his board just after take-off instead of dropping to the bottom of the wave. He’s meanwhile become one of the sport’s most interesting characters, with a love of phrasing and description; he memorably recalled the inside of a big Pipeline as looking “just like the Pope’s leaving room”.

Sutherland’s wave-riding creativity expanded further-possibly amplified by his regular intake of LSD-as he mixed conventional turns with slips, noserides, and flying kickouts. He also became the first surfer, in late 1969, to ride the big surf at Waimea Bay at night.” We used to call him “The Extraterrestrial”, fellow Hawaii surfer Jeff Hakman later said, “Because he was so good at everything. He could beat anyone at chess or Scrabble, he could smoke more hash than anyone, take more acid and still go out there and surf better than anyone”.

In early 1970 for reasons never made clear, Sutherland abruptly left the North Shore and joined the US Army. He didn’t see active duty, and returned to Hawaii in November 1971, but the surf world had passed him by. His tuberiding mantle had been picked up by Jerry Lopez who improved upon Sutherland’s method and had become the new Pipeline master. Sutherland appeared in nearly a dozen surf movies, including Golden Breed (1968) and Pacific Vibrations (1970); he was also featured in Duke Kahanamoku’s World of Surfing a 1968 One-hour CBS TV sports special. Sutherland has been married once and has two sons, first born Gavin Sutherland won the men’s division of the 1996 United States Surfing Championships and by the early ‘00’s had become one of the world’s top aerialists.

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Shortboard Revolution


Starting in ’66 and stretching into the early ‘70s, the Shortboard Revolution marked a quantum leap in surfboard design. Boards dropped from ten-foot-long ‘tankers’ to seven-foot ‘pocket rockets.’ The nose riding/cross step style of the ‘60s was replaced by an ‘Involvement’ approach, in which the surfer slashes up and down the wave face. But it was more than just board design. It was an attitude.Think Jimi Hendrix and Woodstock. Think Vietnam protests and ‘Orange Sunshine’ LSD. Think surf films titled ‘Cosmic Children’ and surfers using their boards as drug smuggling vessels.
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Film Producers
Pierre Weisbein l Email >> l Read Bios >> l

FC Le Goff l Email >> l Read Bios >> l

Nick Quested l Email >> l Read Bios >> l

Treatment written by
Jamie Brisick l Email >> l Read Bios >> l

Art Director
Oskar Lindholm l Email >> l Read Bios >> l
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Pierre Weisbein
is a Film Producer. Recent credits include L’homme de chevet starring Sophie Marceau, Cass and seminal surf film One California Day. Weisbein is currently producing The Mr. Sunset Story about the life of legendary surfer Jeff Hakman

He recently served as Executive Vice President, International Sales & Distribution, for Senator International with direct responsibility in foreign distribution operations where he handled sales for the following releases: The Assassination of Richard Nixon starring Sean Penn (Official selection Cannes), The Grudge (Sony), White Noise (Universal) and Hooligans.

From 1996 to 2003, Weisbein was a key executive at StudioCanal where he held the post of Senor Vice president, International, head of worldwide theatrical sales, and successfully handled sales for Roman Polanski's Academy Award® winning film The Pianist, Cannes Palme d'Or winner David Lynch's Mulholland Drive, Berlin  Golden Bear Winner Patrice Chereau's Intimacy , Christophe Gans's Brotherhood of the Wolf, Daniele Thomson's Jetlag, Francis Ford Coppola's Apocalypse Now Redux  and Brett Morgen & Nanette Burstein's Robert Evans biopic The Kid Stays in the Picture.

From 1996 to 2001, Mr. Weisbein was Vice President, International, and handled television and video sales for StudioCanal's library, the third largest in the world, with more than 5,000 titles including the Carolco library with film titles such as Terminator II, Total Recall and Rambo.
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Oskar Lindholm
is an Art Director / Graphic Designer and artist, originally from Stocholm, Sweden, but for the last few years calling Sydney's northern beaches of Manly home.

"Growing up in Sweden means one thing: Slim chances of epic surf. But I instantly got hooked with surf and everything around our it the first time I paddled out. This happened to be during a snow blizzard on the Baltic Sea. From there on I've set sail to live in places where surf was only a few steps away.

Thoughout my design career I have worked in Stockholm, Sydney and London for design and ad agencies with the big accounts and at design studios taking on any sort of design challenges.
The last couple of years though I have been looking to work more with surf and art related projects.
When this film production came up I was stoked and honoured. It is a true dream project for me, as I have always been inspired by the psychedelic era of surfing and great fan of Jeff Hakman."

Oskar is co-founder and part of the creative collective "Flower Hell" www.flowerhell.com/graphics

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Authorities held the shipment for over 48 hours, which, in 1970, was a violation of constitutional law. As a result, all charges were dropped.
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In 1971, Jeff was invited back to the Duke Invitational.

He won.

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Jamie Brisick
has written two books: We Approach Our Martinis With Such High Expectations (Consafos Press, 2002) and Have Board, Will Travel: The Definitive History of Surf, Skate, and Snow (HarperCollins, 2004). His stories have appeared in The New York Times, The Guardian, Details, and The Surfer’s Journal. In 2008 he was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship. He was the editor-in-chief of Surfing magazine from 1998 to 2000, and surfed on the ASP world tour in the late ‘80s. He lives in New York City with his wife and 6’1” Channel Islands Warp.

www.jamiebrisick.com
Design & production by Flower Hell
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Nick Quested came aboard as Executive Director of Goldcrest in 2000, and has overseen the development and growth of the Goldcrest integrated companies developing the film finance, sales and production lines of business in the company. His most recent credits as producer include Elvis & Anabelle (2007), directed by Will Geiger and starring Gossip Girl's Blake Lively and Max Minghella. Executive Producer of The Winning Season (2009), starring Sam Rockwell and Emma Roberts, the Sundance Grand Jury documentary winner Restrepo (2010), Homework (2010) Sundance Narrative Selection of 2011, starring Emma Roberts and Freddie Highmore, The Girl (2011), starring Abbie Cornish, and Dark Horse (2011) starring Christopher Walken and Mia Farrow.

Born in London, Nick began his film career as an apprentice editor.  He attended NYU's The Tisch School of the Arts. Nick is an award winning director (MTV: Most Ass Kicking Video, The Source: Best Video, MVPA: runner up Best Hip Hop Video) having directed over 100 music videos and commercials for world renowned artists such as Sting, Dr. Dre, P.Diddy, Shaq, Master P, Trick Daddy, T.I. and Brandy, and brands such as Sprite, And1, Nike, Lexus and Landrover.

Nick also wrote and directed the feature documentary,  Voice of a Nation starring Ice Cube, Public Enemy and KRS One which is showcased at the Rock n roll Hall of Fame.
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François-Charles Le Gofff
Following his Masters in Marketing and Distribution, FC has been involved in every aspect of film production on feature films and TV movies working his way up from key grip to Line Producer. In 2008 he was the founder of the production Company GOD SAVE THE FILM where he produced a documentary on Quiksilver as well as two short films. Since 2009 GOD SAVE THE FILM has produced « L’Intruse » directed by Maxime Giffard , « L’effet coccinelle » a comedy directed by Nouriel Malka & Jérôme Sau . The company developsThe Mr. Sunset Story, a feature about the life of legendary surfer Jeff Hakman written by Jaimie Brisick as well as « Clandestins » written by Maxime Giffard and directed by Vincent GiovanniI.
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