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Thursday, September 12, 2013
Updated: September 13, 4:17 PM ET
Burton Presents Backcountry [Snowboarding]

By Willie McMillon
XGames.com

Instead of a team movie, this year Burton is releasing a four-part video series online. "Burton Presents [Snowboarding]" will be free to download on the Burton site. The first installment is coming out Friday.

Since we usually ask Burton's global director of team marketing Bryan Knox to give us the scoop on each year's movie project, we enlisted Bluebird's Willie McMillon to help continue that tradition. Once upon a time, before McMillon started making his own snowboard movies, he used to beg Knox, then a team manager for Vans, for boots. It seemed fitting for the two to reunite for this interview.

Willie McMillon: Explain to me what this is.
Bryan Knox:
We've put out one solid snowboard film each year for the past two seasons. This year, we wanted to go a different route. One project is rad, but it's only one moment. Doing four projects allowed us to extend the moments.

Meaning?
With four, it allowed us to show all kinds of snowboarding, not just one type. I call it a video series because we're putting them up every two weeks to keep people stoked and get them excited about snowboarding.

The four are?
Backcountry is first. It's 18 minutes long. Terje [Haakonsen]'s in there, Jeremy Jones, Mark Sollors, Nicolas Müller, Jussi Oksanen, Mikey Rencz. It launches Friday the 13th. Street comes out Sept. 27, the women's project is out Oct. 11. The resort project is the last one. It'll be out on Oct. 25.

Who directed it?
The directing credit goes to Burton. The Backcountry project was filmed by Tim Manning, Corey Koniniec, Hotwing, Justin Eeles and Gabe L'Heureux. Justin Eeles, Hotwing and Tim Manning edited it.

We filmed with RED cameras and put a lot of resources into each project. I think they've turned out great.

Is the resort one based around the Stash Parks?
It's more about five resorts we've worked with through the years, whether it was a shoot or just riders loving to shred there.

You've been in the snowboard world for a long time. A lot of kids out there probably envy your position. How'd you get going in all this?
At one point, I was sponsored, back a long time ago. I rode for Joyride and Vans. But when I was around 19, 20 years old, I had a lot of injuries. Snowboarding professionally didn't seem like it was really working for me.

Vans offered me a job as an assistant team manager. When I left, seven years ago, I was senior marketing manager. An opportunity for me to work for Burton came ... and now here I am today talking to you.

What would you be doing if you weren't working for Burton?
I'd work in NASCAR. I love racing. I love everything about the whole NASCAR aspect -- all the testing, the tuning. It's such an undertaking, and it's insane what those guys do.

I did not know that about you.
Yeah, I watch the races on the weekends. There's just something about it. It's not just about the driver; it's about the team. I don't know. People think I'm crazy, but I love that.

Do you have any advice for kids who want to work in the snowboard industry?
You have to put your time in. Mostly it's about working for a brand that you back. Everyone's different in what they are and aren't behind. But you really have to work somewhere that you back 100 percent and that will get you up in the morning. Right, Willie? If you aren't backing the brand you work for ...

You're going to rot.
[Laughs.] Right, you're going to stand down.

Anything else we should know about these videos?
The cool thing is they're going to be free. We just wanted to put something out there to get as many eyeballs on the project. They'll be available for download online on the Burton site as soon as they're released.