North of Known

North of Known

Directed by Bryan Smith
Canada, 2016, 52 minutes

VIMFF Finale
Sat Feb 18 @7:30pm (doors 6:30pm)
The Centennial Theatre MAP

2015 National Geographic Adventurer of the Year Gavin McClurg is back with one of the most absurd and preposterous expeditions that has ever been undertaken- a full unsupported traverse of the Alaska Range by foot and paraglider. The expedition has been a dream for Gavin and was planned over a six year period. But no one has flown this far north in Alaska and the protagonists have no idea if it is even possible. Using nothing but their wings and dogged perseverance, and filmed by a skeleton crew in one of the most vicious and inhospitable places on Earth Gavin and his partner Dave Turner struggle through a vast frontier that has way more Grizzlies than people, no infrastructure, brutal weather and their own difference of opinions. The viewer is enveloped into the team's world of ice and snow, and they are treated with a tumultuous but eventually successful journey through one of the most visually stunning places in the world. A Red Bull Media House production, filmed and edited by ReelWaterProductions.


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Bryan Smith is an award winning filmmaker based out of Squamish, British Columbia. His first documentary, 49 Megawatts, received acclaim both for its amazing kayaking footage and insightful exploration of the controversy over British Columbia’s river based energy production. An online version went viral and led to two-feature length sea kayaking films.

His work has appeared at numerous film festivals across the world including the prized Banff and Telluride Mountain Film Festivals.  In the past few years Bryan has built on his adventure film roots and developed a strong reputation in both TV documentary and commercial cinematography.  With a knack for story telling, ability to assemble great teams and an insane work ethic his client list has grown to include National Geographic, Discovery, Disney, Red Bull, Patagonia, New Belgium Brewing, Arcteryx and more.

In 2010 he earned a National Geographic Expedition Grant for his work in Kamchatka, Russia and launched into digital media co-producing and directing The Season web TV series.

He has worked as both a Field Producer and Director of Photography for National Geographic Television on shows including Alaska Wing Men, Explorer, Nat Geo Amazing and Monster Fish.  Most recently he co-produced and directed The Man Who Can Fly, a 60 minute special for the National Geographic Channel Explorer series.

With extensive experience on Red, Alexa, Phantom, Sony F900, Panasonic Varicam, and just about every ENG camera platform, his experience at getting cameras into difficult and remote locations makes him an incredible asset to any production.  Bryan brings a diverse perspective to non-fiction filmmaking having worked on TV, independent documentary and several commercial projects.