Oscar-nominated filmmaker Joe Berlinger travels the globe with legendary windsurfer and pioneering waterman Robby Naish, a 24-time world champion whose quest to master the world’s longest waves unexpectedly reveals his vulnerabilities as a competitor, mentor and father. THE LONGEST WAVE transcends the action sports genre by capturing obstacles outside of the legendary athlete’s professional life in an intimate, cinéma-vérité style, revealing Naish balancing the pursuit of excellence at sea with the demands of life’s complications on land.
Joe Berlinger has been a leading voice in nonfiction film and television for over two decades. Films include the landmark documentaries BROTHER’S KEEPER, the PARADISE LOST Trilogy, which helped lead to the release of the wrongfully convicted West Memphis Three, as well as the Sundance-premiering psychological thriller EXTREMELY WICKED, SHOCKINGLY EVIL AND VILE, which recently debuted on Netflix.
Red Bull Films is an award-winning studio for premium scripted content and theatrical documentaries on a mission to inspire and entertain with ‘beyond the ordinary’ stories. Red Bull Films surprises through compelling and unexpected narratives, captivating characters and outstanding production value. With a portfolio of over 20 feature-length films in the last two decades, recent Red Bull Films include “The Longest Wave” (2020), “Any One Of Us” (2019), SXSW Audience Award-winning “The Dawn Wall” (2018), and Emmy®Award-winning “Blood Road” (2017).
RadicalMedia produces premium content across all media platforms. With offices in New York, Los Angeles, London, Berlin, and Shanghai, RadicalMedia is a global intra-disciplinary media company that creates and produces film, television, music programming, commercials, brand partnerships, interactive design, and digital and immersive experiences for all distribution platforms. RadicalMedia is fluent in each and every discipline of storytelling, with accolades that include Oscar ®, Emmy ®, Peabody ® and Grammy ® Awards. Embracing the future and pushing innovation, RadicalMedia is aptly referred to as Never Established.
The Longest Wave SYNOPSIS
Throughout his storied four-decade career, Robby Naish has been a watersports pioneer, ushering once-niche activities like windsurfing, kite boarding, stand-up paddle boarding, and foil surfing into the forefront of the global sports community, racking up 26 championship titles along the way. It is this lifelong quest to master all obstacles that led Naish to his latest undertaking. Oscar-nominated filmmaker Joe Berlinger travels the globe with legendary windsurfer and pioneering waterman Robby Naish, a 26-time world champion whose quest to master the world’s longest waves unexpectedly reveals his vulnerabilities as a competitor, mentor and father.
THE LONGEST WAVE transcends the action sports genre by capturing obstacles outside of the legendary athlete’s professional life in an intimate, cinéma-vérité style, revealing Naish balancing the pursuit of excellence at sea with the demands of life’s complications on land. Mere weeks before his inaugural attempt at taming the longest wave, Naish suffered his first major injury: a near-fatal hip fracture. With Robby also navigating a difficult divorce and financial tumult, his quest to return to the water takes on new meaning, as a volatile personal life and unwavering drive for professional performance escalate the already-high stakes Robby sets for himself. A personal story of drive, dedication athletic conquest and self-realization, Naish’s tale is emblematic of universal themes that touch on all aspects of life.
THE LONGEST WAVE offers a rare glimpse into what motivates an athlete who has everything to lose to push his body and mind to the limit. With a mix of intimate interviews and high-octane state of the art action sequences, the film provides more than just sensational sports action; It’s a raw portrait of one of the world’s most accomplished athletes, diving deep into what exactly makes him the champion and man he is today.
Legends take a lifetime.
Director: Joe Berlinger (Brother’s Keeper, The Paradise Lost Trilogy, Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile)
Producers: Joe Berlinger, Philipp Manderla and Daniel T. Wilson.
Featuring: Robby Naish, Kai Lenny, Laird Hamilton, Gerry Lopez and Chuck Patterson.
Documentary, 94 minutes