The Mavericks surfer and filmmaker is behind the newly released “Quest for Fear,” a film that explores whether the waves off the Cape of Good Hope in South Africa stand up to the legendarysurf at Mavericks in Half Moon Bay. The 40-year-old director will talk about his film at a showing Friday at Sanchez Concert Hall in Pacifica.
How does the Cape of Good Hope stack up to Mavericks? Mavericks is the measuring stick to the rest of surfing. But [the Cape of Good Hope] is similar in a lot of ways. It’s cold; it has the same coast.
Why did you decide to film in South Africa? Nobody had heard of the Cape of Good Hope a few years ago. It was a real Loch Ness Monster. There was no real information — now it’s fairly well-known. There were only about 10 guys who’ve ever surfed there.
Who is the audience that you think of when you’re making the film? Everybody who makes the movie — it’s mostly for yourself. It has to be true to the guys that I’m with. It has to be accurate. People who don’t surf can still follow it, people who surf won’t be bored. I think it’s one of those sports that speaks to everyone. Big-wave surfing transcends all that. It’s a human endeavor; it’s primal.
What’s the most challenging part of making a surf film? It’s hard to bring all the equipment — shooting big waves is not easy. It can be equated to going on a safari and trying to get the lions. When waves are big, you have to be careful.