On The Cusp, Longlist - Branded

A Conversation

Philip Hessler


The film is built around a conversation between Academy Award-winning filmmaker Jimmy Chin and Ugandan-born snowboarder Brolin Mawejje. Their conversation tells a story about their unlikely career paths and diversity in the outdoor industry; building into Brolin’s own uncertainty about his goals to snowboard in the Olympics and the pressure he feels at potentially being the first snowboarder in the Olympics for an African nation.

Phil got exposed to filmmaking early on his teenage years through his love for skateboarding and snowboarding. His forte in action sports filmmaking started through an internship with the renowned production company Brain Farm and the opportunity to film for National Geographic's Wild Yellowstone project. When he was 19 he began producing his first feature length documentary, Far From Home, the story of Uganda’s first Olympic hopeful in snowboarding. The film found distribution through Red Bull Media House and resulted in the creation of Uganda’s first Winter Olympic Federation. Phil parlayed that success into creating the production company WZRD with his partners Galen Knowles. He has since produced and directed content for partners including Ford, Bridgestone, The Olympic Channel, REI, National Geographic, VICE, and The Wyoming Office of Tourism. He most recently completed a feature length documentary about the story of how skateboarding, surfing, and rock climbing grew from fringe sports to becoming part of the Olympics for Youtube Originals and executive produced by Tony Hawk.