We hopped on the phone to get the background story behind Miles Silvas’ heavy five-minute, one-take line that he shot for the adidas Skateboarding ‘One Stop’ edit.
Let’s get right to it: How many tries did the line take and how many hours (or nights) did you spend filming it?
It took a little while. I'm pretty sure we spent one weekend doing it because we had to start pretty late and wait for the city to die down. And at the gap-to-ledge at J Kwon, the sprinklers would come on at a certain time so we'd have to wait for it to dry up. So we were starting closer to midnight each night. The first night we just kind of scoped out the route to see how the filmer was going to follow me but we didn't get too into it that night. Then we tried it for one full night, a solid amount of tries and switched up the line a couple times. The second night we tried it the whole night and towards the end of the night it worked out. So yeah, a couple of nights.
What was the hardest part of filming the whole thing?
Doing the line, just trying to stay mellow and not think about how many tricks I had to do or how far I had to go. People getting in the way... we had a few people looking out near the trash can and over at J Kwon but there were a few times when people would still be in the way. Or when I did the kickflip over the rail, there'd be a car about to turn on that corner and security too at that same spot. Or just getting all the way to the end and messing up... just little things.
Yeah I wanted to ask if there was ever a try when you made it all the way to the end and missed the last, or one of the last tricks? Even by the time you do that kickflip over the rail it probably felt like a lifetime and that was only about a minute in.
I actually started off the line switch flipping over the rail that I kickflipped over. At first it was working out but once I realized how little amount of time I actually had to try stuff over the rail--because of security or cars on the corner--I had to switch it up. Sometimes we'd be clear and get all the way to J Kwon and there’d be like some random biker crew just sitting on the ledges or something. But yeah, a couple times it happened when I'd get to the end and mess up. The trash can switch heel… someone was in the way a few times, yeah.
Yeah, it’s about 2 ½ minutes in where you do the switch heel over the trashcan. You could've pretty much done any trick at that point but you chose the switch heel. Why was that?
Yeah, I wanted to flip over the can and I knew I could pretty much do that [switch heel] every try so I just went with that. It felt comfy.
Who chose the concept behind the video? A five-minute, one-take line spanning over seven blocks of downtown LA is definitely a super ambitious undertaking. But obviously well worth it.
Colin Kennedy pretty much came up with the whole idea. He presented it to adidas and I think he had me in mind because we had been filming a couple things together previously for Numbers stuff. I had a colorway coming out for the shoe [City Cup] and they were down. So he shot me the idea and I was down and it just went from there.
Why was Koreatown the choice for the location?
I think he [Colin] had a couple different places in mind because I remember him mentioning wanting to film it over Summer while I was in Barcelona but that didn't work out so I think LA was his second choice just because he knew all those spots all lined up on the same side of the street. Kind of famous, iconic spots… so once that worked out I think he just wanted to go with that.
How good did that switch back tail feel at the end of the line?
Fuck, it felt so good. We were doing it all off of natural light and it was kind of dark and I had never skated that spot before, so I was feeling a little weird about skating it. I was warming up with it doing some switch back 50's and stuff then eventually just said fuck it and tried the switch back tail to have the pressure just make me do it. I got there one time and played it safe, did a switch back 50 and turned around back to regular and my wheels hit a crack and took the board from my feet and was like, “What the fuck!” I just tried the switch back tail, slid it and almost had it, and by the third time I got to the ledge it worked. It felt pretty good. It was fun. It was cool to do a little mission that you know wasn't going to be easy. It'd be cool to do another one for an actual part.
Was it the City Cups that made the line happen?
Yeah, I mean if the shoe didn't work then I wouldn't have been feeling it. It kind of sucks sometimes to skate a brand new shoe you've never skated and have to film something pretty important like this so yeah, definitely the shoe helped out a lot.
Watch ‘One Stop’ from adidas Skateboarding here: