ABOUT THE PROJECT
Desert Flight started as something much simpler than the full documentary it grew into. We had worked with our client, Samia, on other projects and knew she was very passionate about horses and riding. We asked if she would be interested in a filming a short 4-5 minute piece at her ranch, about her horses and her love for riding.
Samia loved the idea, and flew the team out to Thermal, CA for a week, to film interviews with some of her friends who were Olympic-level show jumpers and learn more about the sport. The interviews went so well, and there was so much great content, we decided, along with the client, to pursue a longer-form documentary on the sport of show jumping.
For the documentary, we set out to answer the question, "what drives people to do this sport?" This is something Samia was often asked, and we were all excited to pull back the curtain on this amazing world of show jumping and the riders who live and breathe it.
We set out to learn everything we could about the sport of show jumping. We read biographies on the legendary riders we were interviewing, and spent some more time in California, following the riders in the film, and getting the footage we needed. We drew a lot of inspiration there, and tried to anticipate how the story would unfold post-production, to make sure we got everything we needed.
The majority of time spent on this film went into post-production. Grant clocked over 900 hours of his time, just editing, and John clocked quite a few editing hours too. There were many drafts, overhauls of drafts, a lot of refining, and many versions later, we had a piece that we and the client were really proud of. It was a huge team effort.
Desert Flight won three Telly Awards in 2018, and is currently being screened at various world class show jumping events, film festivals, and even the Olympic Museum in Lake Placid, NY. The feedback from the riding community has been amazing, and we are so glad to have been a part of this much beloved film.
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