Winner – “Outstanding Achievement in Filmmaking” – Newport Beach Film Festival 2012
FIVE STARS – “Very Entertaining and absolutely worth watching.” – Film Threat
“A fascinatingly offbeat road odyssey” – The Montreal Gazette
In the summer of 1999, a team of four skateboarders and two bands embarked on a life changing tour. The goal was to inspire kids in rural areas by exposing them to skateboarding and music they wouldn’t otherwise have an opportunity to see in person. Everyone on board grew up in small towns themselves so the tour was affectionately dubbed “Hicks On Sticks”.
Towing a 5,000 pound portable skateboard park behind an old van with failing brakes, the young team traveled nearly 3,000 km through the mountains of Western Canada putting on eight shows. The only financial sponsor dropped out shortly before the tour began but plans went ahead. Longstanding friendships were inevitably tested by the long hauls and lack of money.
The film features the skateboarding of two Castlegar natives: the late Canadian professional skateboarder Josh Evin, and Eugene Voykin. It also tracks the dramatic peaks and valleys of Kimberly native Ian Comishin’s skateboarding company, PM Skateboards. Combining original footage of the tour with old home videos and recent interviews, the film spans two decades in the lives of these young men.
The last stop of the tour was held in Castlegar in July of 1999. A big, energetic audience came out to watch their local boys put on the best skateboard show the town has seen.
“Hicks On Sticks” is the second feature film by emerging Canadian filmmaker Soren Johnstone. He has been working sporadically on the project since 1999, when he traveled with and documented the tour. In 2006 Johnstone received a grant from the BC Arts Council to help continue working on the film, following up and conducting interviews with all of the key players.
“It’s not just a film about skateboarding, music or the tour. This film is an honest documentation of the most pivotal 20 years of thier lives.” said Johnstone.
“Hicks On Sticks” took home the award for ‘Outstanding Achievement in Filmmaking’ at the 2012 Newport Beach Film Festival, and was the opening night film premiere at the BR-1 Skate Film Festival in Sao Paulo, Brazil. The film features an original score composed and performed by Canadian artist, Aaron Read.
“Hicks on Sticks” is the second feature from Warren Lane Pictures, the filmmaking team of Mike Babiarz and Soren Johnstone. Their first film is an award winning dramatic feature shot in Trail and Castlegar called “Play With Fire”.
The screenings will take place one night only at The Old Theatre, (185 Columbia Ave, Castlegar BC) on Saturday, March 2nd at 6:30 and 9pm. Tickets are $10 and will be first come first serve at the door. Hicks on Sticks Indiegogo funders get in free. The Director Soren Johnstone, and one of the skaters Eugene Voykin will be in attendance.
There will be a pre-screening skate jam at the Castlegar Complex skate park on the day of the screening from 3pm – 5:30pm with a shuttle bus to the theatre for the 6:30pm screening.
After the 9 p.m. screening there will be an after-party at the Lions Head Pub featuring the debut show Kootenay’s own Black Sabbath tribute band, “Sack Grabbath”. Entry to the after-party is free with your Hicks on Sticks movie ticket. Visit hicksonsticksmovie [DOT] com to see the trailer and for more information on the film.