A: Squamish, BC
Q: How did you get into filmmaking?
A: Pretty stereotypical actually. In ’98 I over shot a jump snowboarding and blew my knee. While recovering I got into still photography for fun and just ended up being around a couple friends (Carlo Wein and Jorli Ricker) who were already shooting 16mm snowboard films. Jorli took me on during the filming of Ride to The Hills as a cine and it took off from there.
Q: What do you do all day at Anthill?
A: I don’t know where to start, I do about 600 one minute tasks that all add up to, well, hopefully a sweet film and a bunch of cool commercials. That means pretty much everything from sponsorship to accounting to setting up cables and organizing shoots.
Q: What’s the scariest cable cam set up you’ve ever done?
A: Looking back it would be the first few I ever set up shooting snowboarding or during Kranked 5. I didn’t know it at the time but the anchors I was using were sketchy and using a buddy as a human break at the end of a bunch of ropes and webbing tied together was soooo dumb! Luckily nothing bad happened. Most recently it’s the high ones that make me very aware of how far down the ground is like Shandro’s slickrock to bridge ride in Seasons. Basically anytime I get above 40ft I start to question the survivability of a mistake.
Q: Why are you are able to walk down stairs on your hands?
A: I have abnormally strong shoulders from 12 years of gymnastics when I was growing up. It’s kinda like riding a bike, you never forget. And neither does anyone else, apparently.
Q: What is a “5-head”?
A: Well I have one… it is one size bigger than a normal forehead.
Cinematographer / Lead Editor
A: Lions Bay, BC
Q: When did you get into filmmaking?
A: Got my start in 1997 interning at a few of the bigger rental houses in Vancouver. Kind of came at it in more of the traditional way film school route. All the way along doing my own projects trying to get as much out of the crap cameras that we had to work with back then.
Q: What do you do here at Anthill?
A: I put on a lot of hats at Anthill. We all do, that’s the sick part about our crew. Everyone has input on everything – makes for some good round tables. I kind of try to keep us up to date on the tech side of things. I do a lot of the editing and shooting and also the jib work. Our films are a ton of work but it’s a lot better than wearing a monkey suit sitting at a desk.
Q: If you were to ever get time off from filming (no promises) what would you do with your spare time?
A: Spare time??? I don’t know what that is. Summers are full on and I try to get in some pow turns in the winter. It’s nice to put down the camera for a bit and recharge and then come back with a new way to look at things.
Q: No one ever calls you Darren, where did Dzogg come from?
A: I don’t know. No one is called by their real name in the crew. I get crap yelled my way all the time but never the name my mom and dad gave me. You would have to ask Schramm where that came from.
Cinematographer / Editor
The North Shore
Q: And you are…?
A: One who fills his memory cards with pure goodness!!!
What’s you’re filmmaking background?
A: I started shooting snowboarding in the late nineties with my good friends Darcy Wittenburg and Carlo Wein. My passion for filming grew over the years. I was shooting snowboarding in the winter and then started to help with The Collective bike films in summer 2003.
Q: What do you do here at Anthill?
A: Currently I’m sitting at my desk across from Ian and Darcy. Two people who like to make long lists of things for me to do; officially I film and edit.
Q: What do you enjoy the most about filmmaking?
A: My work week is filled with beautiful landscapes, friends, bikes and travel and then I receive pay check. That still amazes me!
Q: How much first aid equipment have you poached from you’re previous life as a Safety coordinator?
A: First of all, I’d like to thank those jobs for allowing me to purchase all my film gear, and also for the countless hours of free time I used to film and edit numerous sports films over the years. I admittedly acquired a mini hospital from years of embezzling safety supplies. They do come in handy on film shoots!
Q: What’s the first sports film you ever watched?
A: It was a long time ago, but there was a skate shop just off Lonsdale in North Vancouver named Division 23. I bought a VHS copy of “The Search for Animal Chin”. It’s a skateboard film by Stacy Peralta. They traveled all over to find old man Animal chin. It was slightly plot driven and was filled with great lifestyle, one of my favourites to this day!!
A: Pemberton, B.C.
Q: What do you enjoy most about being a core member/founder of Anthill?
A: Putting my efforts towards a round table environment for a creative company. It feels good to be a part of something.
Q: You have your hands in a couple cookie jars, what are the other businesses you are a part of?
A: Evolution bike and snowboard shop in Whistler, Pemberton Distillery Inc. (Vodka) and I live on a Hop farm.
Q: How many mountain bike mags do you have a subscription to? How long have you had a subscription to MBA?
A: I have collected Mountain Bike Action since ’87. Put it this way… the advent of the SPD (clipless pedal) came before front suspension and received a larger initial reaction than the debut of front suspension. Unfortunately, I have switched my source of information on biking largely to the internet now. How times have changed.
Q: What influences you?
A: Maintaining an open mind, always. I think there is the potential to be influenced by anything at anytime. The ability to make people smile; hard working people and quality; writers; filmmakers; people who work within the limits of human technology; well designed things from simple tools to high performance cars. Basically anything that employs the merger of creativity and technology.
Q: Is it true you have a photographic memory?
A: Negative. I cannot look at a page of text and have it memorized. But I do have a good memory. It seems to be more like a pre-record function on a video camera. I remember things in high detail and it is stored. Some details I just cannot forget. Memory is something that intrigues me – I enjoying remembering experiences. I will remember what you say to me…
A: The Republic of Brackendale – a flood plain in the lowlands of Squamish BC.
Q: Where did you grow up?
A: Deep Cove, BC.
Q: What’s your deal?
A: I was wrapped up all cozy in the comforting, warm blanket of a secure corporate job. Darcy and the guys ripped me away and now I’m sitting here naked in the cold freezing my ass off wondering how I’m going to cover next month’s mortgage payment… and loving every minute of it!
Q: How did you become part of the Anthill crew?
A: See above. Darcy, CJ and I have been friends for years, through them I also got to know the rest of the guys (mostly while mooching free beers at movie premiers). When we were hanging out, we’d always talk about the stuff they were working on. One thing led to another and the next thing you know I’m sitting here in Anthill’s office all alone answering emails while the guys travel around the world shooting cool stuff. So I’m not sure anything has really changed.
Q: Explain, in your own words, why your nickname is Octo?
A: It all started back in Grade 9 during a basketball game. I made a sweet interception and had a clear cut break-a-way with no one around me – unfortunately I tripped over myself at centre court and fell flat on my face in front of everyone. Pretty much since then I’ve had this totally unfair reputation for being a clutz. When these so called “clutzy” things happen, apparently my limbs resemble an eight-legged sea creature.
Photographer / Creative Advisor
Q: What`s a nug?
A: One of my favorite chocolate bars is called “nugs”; you get them in African countries… peanuts, caramel and chocolate. Also, like miners, we go into the mountains in search of golden moments of action and light – and when all comes together, we’ve mined out a “nug”.
Q: When and how did photography become a part of your life?
A: Photography has been part of my life since I was a young grom. I always liked to play with my parents’ cameras. I feel sorry for them thinking back to the film only era and how many blank crappy photos I took that we had to process and print… As life evolved and my friends and I ventured into exploring life on bikes and skis, I was the one that brought the camera or the video. The rest is a bunch of clicks and motor drive sounds…
Q: What’s your connection to the Anthill crew?
A: The same minds that collectively collected together on a ride one day and decided that we wanted to express our own cinematic experience with mountain bicycles. We are long-time friends that share the passion of riding bikes and boards in the mountains.
Q: Where do you draw inspiration from?
A: My number one source would come from being on my bike. Bikes can take you far and into amazing places, so you subject yourself to seeing lots. It will take a lifetime… second would be music.
Q: When is the last time you shot film?
A: I maybe shoot film 2-3 times a year now. Crazy how fast our work flow jumped to the computer.
I feel sorry for “the lab”.
Q: Canon or Nikon?
A: Canon and Hasselblad.
Darcy Wittenburg Creative Director Q: Hometown? A: Squamish, BC Q: How did you get into filmmaking? A: Pretty stereotypical actually. In ’98 I over shot a jump snowboarding and blew my knee. While recovering I got into still photography for fun and just ended up being around a couple friends (Carlo Wein and Jorli [...]