Watch: Kai Neville X Craig Anderson Release ‘Ceremony’ - Stab Mag

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Watch: Kai Neville X Craig Anderson Release ‘Ceremony’

The cinematic masterpiece follows the brilliant ‘Welcome Elsewhere’ and ‘The Quieter You Are The More You Can Hear’.

features // Nov 8, 2021
Words by Ethan Davis
Reading Time: 2 minutes

In January 2007, Apple Inc. CEO Steve Jobs unveils the iPhone—a touchscreen mobile phone with an iPod, camera and Web-browsing capabilities at the Macworld convention in San Francisco. It transformed the mobile phone from a clunky practical device to a sleek, beautifully designed machine with incredible capabilities and set a new industry standard for user experience. 

The internet suddenly lived in people’s pockets, photography was transformed from a hobby to a part of everyday life, print began its slow march, and an entire ecosystem of businesses based around app and software development sprouted from its ashes growing into the largest companies of our time (Amazon, Microsoft, Alphabet). 

Nokia with their rudimentary ‘snake’ game went from owning half of the phone market share in 2007, to under 3% in 2021. 

Though surf films are not a business which scale quite the same, Kai Neville’s disruption on the sphere of surf cinema has been comparable to the disruption of Apple in the smartphone market.  Pre-2009, surf films followed a fairly straight-forward formula. Big names, big surfing, big soundtrack. Little emphasis was placed on the gestalt, how surfing was actually packaged and delivered to an audience. 

Kai changed that. His filmmaking was equally daring as the surfing, and quality music, film and storytelling came to define Modern Collective as one of the most iconic surf films of the decade with its incredible surfing shot in unseen locations around the globe. 

Craig and Kai forged their work relationship in 2011 with Lost Atlas. In 2016, they released Welcome Elsewhere, where Craig’s surfing at Kandui Lefts in 2015 on a 5’4” Hypto Krypto launched Haydenshapes’ board model to the number one best selling surfboard of the year. In 2019, they released ‘The quieter you are the more you can hear’, another incredible short-film shot in Indonesia. 

Now, a decade since Lost Atlas, Kai is widely regarded as one of surfing’s greatest filmmakers, and Craig is widely-regarded as one of the greatest free surfers. We are jazzed to secure Kai to be a judge for Stab Highway this year, where the winners will land a starring role in a feature length film directed by him. 

‘Ceremony’ is part of work for surfer-owned eyewear company, Epokhe. Their eyewear company has employed an interesting approach to marketing. Their recent clip with Dion and Shaun Manners, was a cute one. Occy’s was flat out hilarious. What a wonderful revival of a dying artform – bold, creative campaigns in an era of mostly dull performance marketing. 

Though his freesurf days are far from over, Craig has recently started a beer brand, Steel City alongside Merewether surfers Ryan Callinan and Matt Hoy, and NRL superstars Matthew and Andrew Johns.

The guys are future-proofing themselves with sagacity, we just hope they don’t move on from making surf films too soon. 


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