Once again the Boulder Theater has reached maximum capacity. This time, viewers came to see Academy Award-winning filmmaker Daniel Junge’s Being Evel. As guests trickled in to fill every seat, Fort Collin’s Justin Roth entertained the theater with a live guitar performance. Next, BIFF co-founder and director Kathy Beeck introduced the movie, one of Rolling Stone‘s 25 Must-See Movies at Sundance 2015.
Being Evel chronicles the raucous life of Evel Knievel. Knievel adopted the persona of a super hero to many, essentially inventing the genre of extreme action sports. His drive to always outdo himself eventually culminated in an attempt to launch over the Grand Canyon by motorcycle, one of the most iconic tales of American cultural history. Then, more realistically, he jumped over 14 buses. The documentary includes interviews from throughout Knievel’s life and the legacies that he spurred, including Tony Hawk, Travis Pastrana, Robbie Maddison and Johnny Knoxville.
The film was produced with incentives provided by the Colorado Film Commission, which seeks to draw filmmakers into the area as a means of boosting state revenue. The editors used special techniques to create the appearance that each of the 60 featured interviews was conducted in Denver’s own Paramount Theater. Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper joined the audience to support this initiative and director Daniel Junge, who was born in Denver. Although, maybe Gov. Hickenlooper is just a Evel Knievel fan, like so many members of the audience.
Daniel Junge, joined by executive producer Molly Thompson and editor Davis Coombe, along with many other cast members, greeted the audience with a “Q and A” session after the film. They spoke mostly about the film’s great technical achievements, honing down hours of found footage and over 1,400 pages of transcripted interviews. Junge also shared that Being Evel won’t be the only film that he creates in association with the Colorado Film Commission.