2015 SXSW Interview: Mick Partridge (Producer – ‘Sneakerheadz’)

SXSW Documentary Selection 'Sneakerheadz'

Sneakerheadz_SXSW_PosterTo Rock or Stock? Sneakerheads will do almost anything to get their hands on a unique pair of kicks, going to such extreme lengths as hiding in trash cans to score a pair of Retro Jordan 11s to camping for days in sub zero temperatures for the latest Nike Foamposites. How did sneakers become as prized as collectable art? From the shores of Cali to the congested streets of Tokyo, Sneakerheadz examines the cultural influence of sneaker collecting around the world and delves into a subculture whose proud members don’t just want to admire art, they want to wear it.

Anticipating the WORLD PREMIERE of ‘Sneakerheadz‘ at the 2015 SXSW Music, Film & Interactive Conference we spoke with the film’s Producer Mick Partridge on developing a cohesive Documentary narrative, the moment sneakers entered the pop culture conversation, and much more. ‘Sneakerheadz‘ screens as parts of SXSW’s SXports program on Tuesday, March 17, Thursday, March 19, and Saturday, March 21, 2015 in Austin, Texas.

Find more information & tickets to ‘Sneakerheadz‘ at the 2015 SXSW Music, Film & Interactive ConferenceHERE

What was your first introduction to sneaker culture? Do you have a personal sneaker-related story you are willing to share
I was making a movie in nyc and stumbled into an Adidas originals store where I found some chocolate brown Adidas Superstars, designed by RUN DMC.  Had to have em.  This got me thinking there could be a cool doc on the subject.

'Sneakerheadz' Executive Producer Wale

‘Sneakerheadz’ Executive Producer Wale

As Documentary filmmakers, how did you want to approach the general narrative of ‘Sneakerheadz’? How did this approach change (if it did) over the time from pre-production to post production?
It was important for us to make a movie that appealed to the novice and the expert at the same time.  We wanted to take the viewer deep into this dense subculture and let them see for themselves just how passionate these folks really are. Along the way, we quickly saw that there was a good theme in how sneakers connect people from disparate parts of the world.  Sneakers bring people together.

Can you identify a single moment, which brought the idea of the sneaker out from a simple practicality to a mode of artistic/individualistic expression?
Id have to say when RUN DMC got the first sneaker endorsement deal that changed the world. Later, when they had 16000 rabid fans hold up their Adidas @ Madison Square Garden, the world was a different place.

Samantha Ronsen

Samantha Ronsen

Without giving away too much from the film, can you give us an example of a particularly interesting interview/situation you heard/came across while making ‘Sneakerheadz’?
We found some great characters in Japan.  One, in particular, Hommyo really stood out and helped us define the film.  Today he is one of the most influential figures in kicks.

In your travels with ‘Sneakerheadz’ did you notice any geographic area that was particularly passionate about the subject?  If so, why do you think this is?
The Japanese are rabid sneaker fans.  They know the brands, the designers, and even their stores are elaborate and beautiful.

– Interview Conducted by Steve Rickinson

Facebook: /Sneakerheadzdoc
Twitter: @Sneakerheadzdoc

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