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Friday, November 16, 2012
Image Maker: Joe Carlino

By Liam Gallagher
ESPN.com

Joe Carlino has got a new gig. You know Carlino, don't you? Well, if you don't, you soon will. He used to run things in video land at TransWorld, before moving onto Videograss. Now he's Nike Snowboarding's head moviemaker.

His most recent work, "Nike Snowboarding Project, Chapter 1," is the first in a three-part web series that Nike is putting out this winter. "Chapter 2," by Mack Dawg legend Brad Kremer, released Tuesday, and Justin Hostynek's film is up next -- pretty heavy company to share trilogy credit with. Carlino admits he was a little surprised, albeit honored, to be picked alongside legends like those two for the project. But there's no doubt he earned the opportunity. Carlino is a workhorse, Final Cut wizard and one of the most capable filmers around.

This winter he'll be directing Nike's first full-length snowboard movie, which is pretty heavily anticipated. You should know more about the man behind the lens. So here he is.

ESPN.com: Let's talk about "Chapter 1." Are you happy with how it came out? It's pretty action-packed!
Joe Carlino:
Yeah... You know, we didn't have the entire winter -- and it was a tough winter, but all in all it turned out cool. And Justin and Brad's films turned out really cool.

This year we're going to do a full film. Up to this point Nike hasn't put out a full-length action edit for the core, so I'm really psyched to be a part of it.

So you'll be at the helm this season, directing the full-length video?
Yep, I'll be directing the action film and working alongside and with a bunch of awesome guys. It's a crazy roster for the movie. It's the whole team! You've got Nicolas [Müller] and Gigi [Rüf] riding powder. And then you've got Jed [Anderson] and Halldor [Helgason] hitting rails. Annie Boulanger, Johnnie Paxson, Danny Kass, Scotty Lago... The lineup is sick!

You're going to fill up hard drives fast.
Yeah! And the coolest part is that everyone is committing to the movie as their first priority for the winter. Everyone's 100 percent dedicated to filming for it. So, with that being said, I'm blown away by being able to work on it.

Joe Carlino is a master with the fisheye lens, and yet he still pushes the limits every time he’s out filming. Sage Kotsenburg, face poke.

Internet-based projects seem like the way to go these days. What's your take on the future of the DVD? Do you think it will survive?
Oh man, I don't know. The DVD market right now is crazy. I can't believe that the new Apple computers don't have DVD drives in them, you know? I think that's a sign of what's to come.

It sucks to say, because as much as I want to support the local snowboard shops and the companies making movies, I can pick up my iPad and watch every single one of the newest movies with one click. Or I could get in my truck, drive to the local snowboard shop, spend $30 on a DVD, drive home and put it in my DVD player...

It's just becoming a different world. A lot of these [snowboard] companies aren't making movies to make money on them, they're making them to get exposure, so having a DVD is just not really a priority anymore.

In your years of filming, what skills have taken you the farthest? What are the most important skills for the job?
You know, it's more than just being a good filmer or editor, it's about being a friend and being responsible and on top of things. When you're planning trips -- going to Europe, going to the backcountry or whatever -- you need to be a leader. It's also about having fun and being fun to hang out with. You don't want to be hanging out with nerds or idiots.

Obviously being a great filmer is important, but we know tons of filmers out there who are not Steven Spielberg. But they are great guys to hang out with and that's what really makes the difference.

Joe Carlino, sitting down on the job.

Yeah, a good group dynamic is essential.
Yeah, because really, filming snowboarding, being out there, getting shots, it's a group effort, not a one-man project. And also, I always try and remind myself of how hard those guys are working to get shots. It's crazy how tired I'll be and all I was doing was filming, while those guys were hiking, rag dolling, just working so hard.

But that's what makes me work hard. If they're hiking a jump for one more hit right before the sun goes down, I'll hike up to get a better angle, do whatever I have to do, use the last of whatever strength I have to get a better shot, because that's what those guys are doing. I just try to give them the same amount of effort back.

So what's the best part of the job?
The freedom and the traveling. It's crazy where we get to go! When I graduated high school, I thought, "I want to go to college part time so I can start traveling." And back then I was thinking of traveling to, like, upstate New York or maybe Montreal. (Laughs.) And now we're jumping on planes to go to Iceland or Norway or Japan with a day's notice, which is pretty unbelievable.

Just today I was thinking about it -- how I have to keep working as hard as possible so I can keep this job. I'll just keep working hard until I just physically can't, until my body won't let me travel and keep up with these younger kids. (Laughs.) Not that I'm that old. But I'd love to be doing this until I physically can't.