Influences: Nick Waggoner

How Tanner Hall's segment in 2008's "Believe" inspired Nick Waggoner

Editor’s Note: Every winter, the POWDER Awards recognize and honor the best skiers, filmmakers, and ski movies of the season. This year marks the event’s 15th anniversary. Leading up to the show on December 5th in downtown Salt Lake City, we’ll asking some of the standout winners and nominees of Powder Awards past about their favorite films and scenes in ski movie history. Nick Waggoner, director of Sweetgrass Productions, starts us off.

Last year, at the 14th Annual POWDER Awards, Nick Waggoner and Sweetgrass Productions took home Movie of the Year for Valhalla, a British Columbia-based ski movie that incorporated a fictional narrative and wonderland visuals to tell a story. But before Waggoner ever shot his first ski segment, he was sitting on a New York City subway and watching ski movies like Tanner Hall’s landmark film, Believe, which won Movie of the Year in 2008.

“I remember watching Believe for the first time—watching the Retallack segments, the Hokkaido footage set to Royksopp, young Kye [Peterson] and Sean Pettit. I think that was the first wave of a different type of ski film, where the artistry and style was catching up to the quality of the skiing. I still love that film.” —Nick Waggoner.

Some people pretend the audience is naked. Sweetgrass just gets naked. Sweetgrass accepts Movie of the Year at the 14th Annual POWDER Awards. PHOTO: David Reddick
Some people pretend the audience is naked. Sweetgrass just gets naked. Sweetgrass accepts Movie of the Year at the 14th Annual POWDER Awards. PHOTO: David Reddick