As they say, better to end a good thing at a high point. That bittersweet note rang true today when the Faction Collective released the final episode of their three-season long web series, “We Are The Faction Collective.”
The series will go down in history for bringing together one of the most talented casts in skiing—Candide Thovex, Tim McChesney, César Fabre, Etienne Merel, Duncan Adams, Simon D’artois, Mark Nowakiwsky, Cody Cirillo, Will Berman, Adam Delorme, and friends. Filmed in ski paradises between Colorado and France, “We Are The Faction Collective” visualized every skier’s fantasy—a group shred—and hello, with Candide. But more than that, the Collective enabled an opportunity for their athletes to build off each other’s creativity and style. For the grand finale, the crew met up for one last shred at Verbier, Switzerland, where Faction is headquartered. Read on for a few parting thoughts from Faction’s Colorado crew. And don’t fret. Faction has a new project up their sleeve, so all your friends will be back next season.
POWDER: What’s the Collective all about?
Cody Cirillo: It’s like being a part of a family. We are all inherently connected through skiing, but I believe there is also a deeper connection that exists between us all.
Tim McChesney: With Faction, we use the term Collective instead of just team because we do so much together as a group. A team kinda makes everyone sound similar where as a collective is more of a diverse group of people. When we go on trips, there are always very different people from all over the globe coming together to ski in all different styles and ways. Every skier is so different which adds a lot to the webisodes and makes them fun to watch.
Will Berman: To me the collective is the widest range of some of the best skiers in the world, from freeride to urban to park skiing.
Filming with everyone skiing together, how did that influence the edits? How did you tap into the creativity of the group?
Cirillo: Faction is made up of so many unique individuals, each with their own direction of skiing. As a group, I think we really feed off of each other and push each other’s skiing to new heights. The camaraderie between us is extremely supportive as well—we have a good time skiing together (especially because a lot of us are from all corners of the globe and don’t get to ski together often).
McChesney: Every rider is so unique. Whenever we are on a trip everyone kinda does their own thing and hits features differently or does different tricks. It’s cool to see all the different stuff the riders come up with that you would never think of.
Berman: Everyone brings something different to the table, but it all flows together somehow.
Adam Delorme: Skiers have always filmed in groups. It’s what makes it fun.
What are you most proud of, in regards to the webisodes?
Delorme: Our kick ass filmer/director/athlete Etienne poured his heart into these episodes and we are super lucky to have one of the most passionate skiers you will meet driving this ship.
Cirillo: What people don’t see is the work behind the scenes that goes in to creating these webisodes. Between hours of shoveling, tomahawking down landings, jet lag and influenza, and fighting to keep up the daily motivation, making webisodes is really not as simple as just skiing around with a filmer. We all put in a ton of work throughout the trips to make each webisode the best we can.
I’m most proud of the genuine team effort in each of the episodes. As I mentioned, it really isn’t all just skiing and filming. It’s such a production and requires everyone to work together. There’s photographers, filmers, drone operators, athletes, interns, and so many other people that make these episodes possible. For us to all be on the same page and to put all of our combined efforts into a 6-minute video is something quite amazing and definitely strengthens our “familial” bond.
McChesney: The webisodes effectiveness. Before them no one had really heard of Faction and now you see Faction is all over. I’m sure not all of this is directly correlated to the webisodes but I would say a lot is. They get lots of exposure and people are always talking about them. Not a lot of companies put that much effort into videos like this and I think it is awesome for a company trying to grow its presence In the ski world.
Favorite trip or day?
Cirillo: I think one of my favorite days was our sunset shoot in Tignes. We had the whole crew at the spot: team managers, ski designers, athletes, etc. We built this beauty of a jump the day before and waited eagerly to hit it. As soon as we started, the session just popped off—huge double backflips, crazy grabs and rotations, slushy punch front flips and endless tomahawks. Everyone was throwing down and the vibe was at an all time high. We hit the jump for hours.
McChesney: The whole Cooke City Trip with Duncan and Delorme. I grew up in Montana and always wanted to go sledding in Cooke. We had some really deep days and it was one of my favorite trips I have ever been on. Also one of the days in Argentina this past fall where we got to ski some awesome pow in September. Can’t complain about a pow day in the fall followed by some delicious wine and steak!
Cirillo: I’m definitely bummed with the conclusion of the webisodes, yet I am extremely excited for what’s to come in the future and to keep working on film projects with Faction. We’ve got such a great roster of athletes and we’ve been refining our craft and approach these past few years—whatever comes next will be something special.