Video Diays - Short Interview with Francisco Saco

You all know "Video Days", right? Legendary skate video and to some people the most important of all times. Obviously their won't be anything like that, but Francisco Saco... Ah, just come to Werkstatttraum (Berlin, Kreuzberg, Skalitzer Strasse 100) this FRYday and see yourself.

And you could read the little interview before...

We talked about your video in the interview last year and I'm wondering if it's really like a safari documentary in the end?
With this film, I’ve attempted to create a narrative line running through the entire video, in that of course there is a story with segments in between most parts pushing the story along, but I have also tried to make each and every part distinct and have its own personality, while pushing this theme of the wilderness documentary film/found footage/wildlife safari exploration and have it come through. Whether by using images to intercut in between tricks or the music I’ve chosen to use, the idea of this being a primitive video is very much there, of the idea of exploring an unknown land that is rough and dirty.

How long did it take you to film and edit?
I began filming this project around the end of 2008/beginning of 2009 when I rediscovered my passion for super 8mm filming and when my father gifted me our old family hi‐8 camera, which he had kept since 1990, and to which my surprise was still in working form. From then on out it became an obsession more than anything, to want to make a skate film similar in ways yet different to what I had seen before, in terms of the format and how the skating was being presented, under what context it was being shown, the idea that behind the skateboarding you were watching there was a message, there was symbolism, there was history, there was opposition, there was a clash of cultures, there was an idea of empires being built and collapsing and how we can either choose to pay attention to that sort of history or ignore it completely.

Will you sell it or put it on the Internet?
I will make only a handful of limited hard copies and then eventually upload it to my Vimeo account so it can spread and be seen via the interwebs.

What was the worst and best reaction on the video?
I don’t know about reactions to the film because so far only two people have seen the video in its entirety and the reaction was a positive one I would say, but only because they are friends. I can’t expect to know what people will take from the film, but I do hope they will at least take with them a sense of having watched skateboarding, in the very least, presented to them in a different way. Maybe not an entirely new way, but hopefully in some small manner, a different way. Skateboarding is very trend orientated and I would be lying if I sat here and said I hadn’t been aware of the trend in skateboarding for nostalgia and for a return to analog and the use of VHS and a more dirty style of presenting skate videos and etc. I have been very observant and what I watch for sure influences my mode of working, but at the same time I wanted to get away from nostalgia for nostalgia’s sake and present a relic of a video, if you will; a story in the vein of Animal Chin for the Twitter and Instagram generation.

How long will the video be?
As of now, the video stands at a whopping 45:22 minutes. I had hoped I would have come in at under 40 mins, but alas, that was not to be the
case. I feel that the video reflects everything I have to say and that it has to be that length. It’s the way I’ve envisioned my story unfolding and how the skating should be seen and experienced. The internet has made a strong case for short clips to be the new norm, the new standard, but as I recall mentioning to you when last we spoke, a short clip is like a single off a hit record, just a taste of what’s to come. And if these 20 minutes clips that pop up from time to time are EP’s, well then my film is definitely a long player, an LP. My film is the dreaded concept album from the golden age of prog rock! (cue King Crimson’s “In the Court of the Crimson King”)

What do you honestly think will the people's reaction be like?
Again, I can’t or possibly don’t want to think about people’s reaction. If I thought constantly how people would react to things, I probably would never get anything made from fear of total rejection. Its silly to get hung up on that. Will people not be into how long it is, especially now in the Mega‐Internet age? Yes, maybe, perhaps not. Some will dig it, some won’t. Some people will prefer the European skating to the Costa Rican skating. Fact: European skating is more advanced than skating in most Latin American countries, including Costa Rica. But I will say this, for being such a small country, Costa Rica is producing a ridiculously high level of skating at the moment, with more and more skateparks being built and skateboarding finally integrating itself within local and popular culture after many decades of being on the fringe. Here in Germany you have the great advantage that skateboarding was not only introduced, but accepted into mainstream culture long, long ago. And that shows. You need a long history of doing something and the support for it to actually establish a talented scene, in my opinion. So, to answer your question, I honestly don’t know how people will react. They will either boo or cheer at the premiere, the video will either have 400,00 hits within the first week I upload it or it will get 40 hits after two months, and all mostly from my grandmother supporting me, despite the fact I’m quite sure she doesn’t even know who the Internet is and how she can call him up on the phone to ask how for the weather forecast. Its all relative man. I’m just finally glad to be putting the video out there and finally being done with it and getting it off my back.

You 're also showing it in Dresden on the Broiler's Jam. Anywhere else?
The Pivot boys in Cologne are showing it on Oct. 4 and I’ll be there for it. Dennis Lass at High Five skateshop in Hannover is also showing it on Oct. 11 and I’ll also be there. Perhaps there might be some more dates in Germany and even in Europe, but I would still have to organize those. Other than that, the two transatlantic dates are Oct. 18 in NYC at my friend’s The Principals’ Office run by my very good homie and the dvd cover designer Drew Seskunas. And then finally, around Oct. 20 or so I believe, my friend Olman Torres of Standby Project will organize a screening at a book fair in Costa Rica, which unfortunately I won’t be able to attend to. I definitely wanted to be back home to see the reaction of everyone there, but maybe I’ll do a second screening at some point at the end of the year when I go back for warmer holidays.