Tanner Pendleton and Jake Kuzyk talk Vans LANDLINE

The following conversation took place in a hotel room just outside of Innsbruck, the day before the global premiere of Vans first ever full-length snowboard video, LANDLINE. Jake and Tanner graciously appeared with red wine and beer in hand and began telling us tales of their filming adventures, their history working together and how excited they were to share LANDLINE with the rest of the world. It was a little last minute, I'm pretty sure we all had monumental hangovers from the night before, tired muscles from riding powder all day, and maybe even a taste of Jamie Lynn's magic medicine earlier on in the afternoon while we waited for a bus, but we prevailed nonetheless and got all the details you didn't even know you wanted. So read on, enjoy Tanner's laid back positivity and Jake's unshakeable humbleness. These dudes crushed it and thrive on each others company. After watching the movie, we discussed plenty more amazing stories, but alas, one too many beers were had that night and memory is a capricious mistress. - William  


Method: So Tanner you’ve obviously seen the film about a million times, having edited it. 

Tanner: Yeah, I had to watch it like four times a day for five days straight because I was exporting and then redoing the audio, somebody was doing the colour, every single time they did something I had to watch it again, I kept fucking up like one tiny thing and would have to export it again. Actually, the last time I exported it I somehow moved your [Jake] clip, the very last clip, one frame out, so I watched the whole thing through, thinking ‘yes, I didn’t fuck up’, and then saw that and had to export it all again. 

Method: Jake, have you seen the whole movie yet?

Jake: Yes, but not for a couple of months. I’ve seen it a couple of times. Yeah, I’m pretty happy with how it came out. I wish there were a few more things that I wished I would have gotten but generally, I’m pretty stoked on how it all came together in the end, so. It’s good. Definitely, when I watch it, I feel as though there are a few holes in my part, things where I think ‘that would have been so nice’. But, it’s cool. 

 

The one that got away. 

 

Method: So most of the movie is shot on 16mm, the visual style looks great. Can you talk a little about the filming process Tanner?

Tanner: It was a big collective effort of myself, Harry Hagen, Jake Price, Hayden Rensch and Skylar Brent as well. So there were at least four filmers at any one time, split between 12-15 different riders. 

Method: Let’s talk about some of the locations. Bulgaria was in there.

Jake: That was the big one. It was kind of around this time last year. We went from there to the Czech Republic and met up with some of the other guys because we were split into two groups. One group was in Germany and then went to the Czech Republic, one group in Bulgaria then the Czech Republic. Later on, we went to Murmansk, Russia. It was crazy spending that much time in Eastern Europe. I’m Ukrainian and Polish, and while we didn’t get to visit those exact countries it was nice to discover that part of the world. I’d still like to go back and see Poland and also other parts of Russia, I thought Russia was so sick.

Method: Is your part mostly made up of street stuff then Jake?

Jake: Yeah, it’s all street. I did film a couple of powder bits but we just felt like it didn’t fit in. By the second year, it seemed like a smarter decision to just go after the street stuff, and complete the part with that style. As much as I like riding powder, I’m still very novice to it so it takes way more time and effort for me to get the shots I’d like to get, for me to justify that time is hard. Especially when the video has pretty high expectations, I had to work out how to best spend my time. Where will I fit in best? There were some things the powder guys hit that I would have loved to have done, that looked so fun and I would have been confident riding, but then there are other spots which looked insane. I wouldn’t have known what was going on. Nevertheless, I was stoked to see their stuff and follow them a bit. 

 

 

Method: Tanner, how did you get involved in filming for Vans?

Tanner: It actually started maybe four years ago, when we started filming Jake’s welcome to Vans part. 

Jake: We’ve known each other for like six years though, two years before the welcome part. But that video might be five years old now because this video has taken like two years, and before that, you did the other welcoming clip with Dillon, Rav and Danimals and all those guys, the year before that was my welcome to vans clip, so four. 

Tanner: So yeah pretty much that, then we talked about how sick it would be if Vans did make a movie. Jake and Darrel would always tell me that Kevin [Costello] wanted to make a video and Vans wanted to make a video, so I just kept hitting up Kevin and bugging him. I just kept on bugging him, saying how sick the team was and that the filmers were lined up, enough to the point where he agreed and then eventually it got serious. We went to California and pitched the idea to them and they were down. 

Jake: We all were pushing for it. As soon as I got on Vans, I was thinking ‘imagine if we made a video’. I knew all the other guys were going to get on, this team is gonna be nuts. Vans is so sick and it’s been sick for so long, this could be the biggest film they’ve done for snowboarding. In my head, we had all these ideas about how crazy sick it would be. It’s actually weird thinking about it now, I haven’t thought about that for so long, until this moment. We were talking about it so much before we started filming. 

Tanner: It seemed like it was just going to happen no matter what. Kevin was down from day one. 

 

 

Method: I bet having the full-length Vans skate movie, Propellor, helped a lot, too. 

Jake: That helped too. It came out and everyone loved it. So that certainly streamlined the process a bit. But yeah, Kevin’s been pushing it from the beginning so hard. It was something he really wanted to do because he’s been working there for quite some time now. This was a big project for him. 

Method: So we’ve got the Global premiere happening in Innsbruck tomorrow night, but from who I’ve spoken to, it seems like none of the riders have seen their parts, apart from you, Jake.

Tanner: Yeah no one saw it other than Jake and Blake. They came and hung out this summer at my spot where I was editing it. Most of the dudes on the team haven’t seen it. Dan [Liedhal] hasn’t seen his part and doesn’t even know his song. I’m really hyped for the people who haven’t seen anything to watch the movie, hopefully, they like it. 

Method: Where did you do the bulk of the edit?

Tanner: I was living in Providence, Rhode Island, this summer so I was editing it back there. It’s really chill there, kind of the perfect place to edit because there weren’t too many distractions. I could really hunker down and get a bunch of editing done. All summer it was me, Harry and Skylar who lived there doing all the editing, working on different stuff. We had a little mini office compound going on. It was fun. These dudes [Jake] came through at some point and hung out. 

Jake: That was sick. Providence is cool. It’s really small but really old, it looks cool. We ate a bunch of good food and there are fun spots to go skating, it’s near the ocean. We had a fun time. 

 

Method: You do quite a bit of skate filming yourself Jake, did you get behind the lens at all for Landline?

Jake: Dude, no not really. 

Tanner: I don’t know why you never do. 

Jake: [Laughs] Like, when you’re shovelling so god damn much and snowboarding it’s hard to. Also, I can’t film snowboarding. I tried it the other day, here. I was like, I don’t know how to film snowboarding, I have no clue. Maybe fisheye I could film snowboarding, but long lens, these spots are so big, you have to move around so much, to film the whole thing. The 16mm camera, I have no clue how to use that. I tried using it a few days ago, So no, I didn’t film anything for this. [laughs]

Method: Who shot all the 16mm footage?

Tanner: It was all of us. It was cool, Kodak was huge. They hooked us up so much. Pretty much when we started the movie I was going to place an order for film, and my friend Kevin [Casternero?] said hey, you should call this lady at Kodak and tell her that you’re making a movie for Vans and see what happens. She was like ‘you’re kidding me, I just got out of a meeting where we were talking about trying to partner with Vans’. Right away, she linked me with this dude Joshua Robertson, who is super cool, he used to be the Think skateboarding Team Manager, we hit it off right away, talking about skate and snowboard videos that we were inspired by, how shooting on film could make this project better. They ended up giving us all the film for free. 

Jake: That is actually so crazy. I had no idea. They have a title right?

Tanner: Yeah they do. Everyone at Vans was obviously really psyched too. It made sense for both companies to work together. There was definitely a vibe we wanted to go for, that was enabled more through shooting on film. We really just wanted to make a classic snowboard video, that a young or old snowboarder could watch and feel proud to be a snowboarder. When we went into the office that’s literally all I said, we want to make a snowboard video that makes snowboarders proud to be snowboarders, and that’s it. 

Method: And then you just had free reign to do what you wanted?

Tanner: Yep, pretty much. 

Jake: It was cool too, when organising trips, it was all us thinking ‘where should we go’, there were no commitments. We filmed in Russia, small little towns, it was really cool. Montreal, Russia, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Boston. 

 

 

Method: Which was your favourite trip?

Tanner: I think my favourite trip was the last one, to Tahoe, which was basically not even a filming trip. I really like Tahoe. It was just me, Mike Rav, Harry Hagan, Parker, Chris Roach, we were pretty much just hanging out in Tahoe having a good time, it was cool because it was the wind down of the whole season. The winter was so full-on, going everywhere super fast and crazy, worries about getting tricks, this was just chill. Revelstoke and Angorra were sick too, looking back. In the moment it was a bit stressful because I’m not the best snowmobiler, it was a bit of a learning experience. Looking back on those trips now, they were insane. So sick, we went to Chowder Creek and stayed in an RV. 

Method: Finally, are you proud of what you’ve been able to do? 

Tanner: Honestly, I don’t know if I’ll ever make something that I can say I fully love everything about it, but yeah for sure, I’m super proud of it. These dudes put in an insane amount of work, over two years, and Harry, Jake, Hayden, Skylar and myself, put in so much time filming. I think the way that it looks, for sure we did our absolute best. 

Jake: You’re probably a bit jaded now.

 

© William Sleigh. Tanner at the global premiere. 

 

Tanner: Yeah, I’m way too deep into it to have an objective opinion. I know for sure, I’ll look back on it when I’m older and think that it was a sick time in my life. These adventures were insane. 

Jake: Your life was pretty much on hold for like two years. It was crazy, I kinda felt bad for you when I’d be at home just decompressing from a trip and you just be not. You’d be doing another trip, or we’d be chilling at the hotel at night and Tanner would be walking out on the phone constantly, that shit is crazy. I get stressed out with the limited amount of things I have to do, you know, I couldn’t imagine what it was like. You kept your cool though, you did well. 

Method: I think it will feel good when you sit in the cinema tomorrow and the lights go down, and you see it on the big screen. 

Find out more about LANDLINE, right here. 

 

© William Sleigh. The whole Vans crew on opening night.

 

www.vans.co.uk