It looks like Joel Moody is the star of a new BMX film entitled Heroes of Dirt. Taking place in Allentown, PA, and centering around the Catty Woods trails scene, might this be the RAD of a new generation? Only time will tell, but I’m kinda psyched to see this thing. The movie premiers on October 25th in Allentown, PA where the majority of the filming took place, then there’s an LA premiere on Nov. 1st. Get all of the details below.
ALLENTOWN, PA: Eric Bugbee was 10 when he first rented a VHS of RAD, the 1986 cult classic movie about BMX riders, watched it 100 times and began riding in his small backyard. At 14, he and some buddies needed more terrain and began building dirt trails in the Catty Woods in his hometown of Catasauqua, Pa. Inspired by RAD, Eric headed off to film school at Penn State and subsequent riders including Eric's brother, Michael Bugbee and a handful of other local riders, took over building hundreds of jumps, ramps and turns. About seven years ago the woods were going to be razed when Lehigh Valley International Airport bought the 14-acre parcel. The rider turned filmmaker went into overdrive, and along with fellow local BMX riders, and saved the trails together. Today, the Catty Woods is an awesome site known internationally as one of biggest BMX trail parks in the world. It's like Sherwood Forest meets Adobe Village – hypnotic and surreal.
On October 25, 2014 at 7PM Bugbee's first feature film, "Heroes of Dirt" (HOD) will make its world premiere in Allentown, PA where half of the film was shot. About 30% was lensed in the Catty Woods. It is an unforgettable story of triumph of the human spirit, coupled with a strong dose of riding by legendary pros and hardcore locals. Allentown City Mayor Ed Pawlowski opened his arms to Eric and his wife Jill Bugbee, co-writer and producer of the film. Bugbee Productions is based in Allentown and their track record allowed them nearly unlimited access to shoot action packed chase scenes on the streets with full cooperation of the police. They also took over a park to stage and build the fictitious Pro BMX Contest "Heroes of Dirt." The course was designed and built by Dave King of Dirt Sculpt Construction who designs jumps for the X games and Redbull.
The World Premiere Festival will also feature a "Heroes of BMX"Pro Contest, consisting of big sets of trails-style wooden doubles and a wall ride. The Contest is open to all pro-class riders and will feature qualifying rounds for the final round , in which the top 3 riders will receive cash prizes. The Event will take place in front of the movie theater and will be free to the public for viewing.
The action movie stars Joel Moody, a BMX rider from Texas now an actor in LA. He is joined stunt riding with big names in the East Coast Trails Scene and X Games: Chris Doyle, Anthony & Ronnie Napolitan, Brian Foster, Pat "Big Daddy"Laughlin, Van Homan, English Robbo, Edwin de la Rosa, Auggie Simoncini, Seth Klinger, Dave King, and Steve "C Diddy"Crandall.
The premiere is unique since Blue Trail Entertainment (Bugbee Productions' film group sister company) has formed an alliance with Haydenfilms, a non-profit organization whose mission is to promote films coming out of the Lehigh Valley (and Eastern Pennsylvania). Together they are planning a day long festival event that will kick off with a community bike ride at a local park and feature a PRO BMX Contest in center city Allentown, Film and Media Education Panels, Music, Food, Product Giveaways, Red Carpet, Film Screening at the 1200 seat Allentown Symphony Hall and VIP After Party. The Hollywood, CA premiere will take place on Saturday Nov.1 –Time and place TBD.
"Beyond the scope of its high-quality production value," Mayor of Allentown Ed Pawlowski explains, the film is a "favorable representation of the City of Allentown at this time of our economic renaissance" and "the best film project to come out of our city thus far. It is a fun-filled action movie, centered around some great BMX competitive stunt riding both with a life-changing mentorship theme that appeals to reach at-risk youth for the greater good."
"Who's crazy enough to make stunt driven action movies on a shoestring budget? Building the Catty Woods from nothing but dirt, wood, and stones is analogous to making an independent feature,"Bugbee said in a recent interview with ESPN. The movie was basically shot for $100,000. "Regarding jump building, since we were kids who didn't have any real money to build ramps out of wood, we had to be resourceful and use what was available – shovels, pick-axes and a lot of teenage energy. With a strong work-ethic, and a lot of other dudes coming into the mix from other towns nearby, it brought a world-class BMX spot to life.
With this movie, we borrowed the same principle that of hard-work and tenacious hope would enable us to make something for the big screen that would rival a studio picture of a similar genre and do it at a small fraction of the budget." Accelerate –The BMX Movie was the original title for the screenplay, and then we decided that a more apt name would be Heroes of Dirt – like the contest, but it's also a metaphor. People often become real heroes by overcoming challenging, often times, dirty situations."
More people got on board like Kevyn Bashore as co-writer and producer, Manny Ribau as co-producer, and Joel Ivory as cinematographer who also grew up riding BMX. We were able to get some more crew, investors, the city, restaurants, family, friends and fellow riders to join in."
The film is part of TUGG, a new and innovative way for an person or group to bring the film to theaters in communities around the U.S. – anywhere someone requests it. Visit the links below to find out more about the movie, the premiere festival and TUGG.
Producer, Heroes of Dirt, Blue Trail Entertainment, Inc.