There are very few groups of people in the world of shred who have done what the family at Voleurz accomplished. Among the list of these accomplishments, squashing the skier vs. snowboarder beef.
It was announced late last week the Voleurz will no longer be producing feature films, web edits (headed up by Darren Rayner and Mason Mashon) and will be stepping away from the apparel line (designed by Harvey Li) that they have built up over nearly a decade.
The locally founded brand is well known for producing an incredible full length ski / snowboard / skateboarding feature film each year, with both leading film making and riding. They did this by taking the road less traveled. Bringing together friends and talented riders from skier and snowboard clans to collaborate. This is not an easy thing to do and there were hurdles.
What snowboarding magazine is going to write about a movie with skiers in it? What ski website is going to promote a film with snowboarders in it? Which snowboard brands are going to sponsor a ski movie?
The Voleurz crew didn't give a f@*&.
They knew what they wanted to do and they knew what they had was good. They created their own buzz and successfully hyped their movie by hitting the road in a grass roots movement of premiere tours unparallelled by any other Canadian shred film production. Voleurz hit the cities and ski resorts towns and they brought the party. Outside the Kill Your Boredom premiere this year at the Lamplighter Pub in Vancouver there were people scalping tickets above face value.
The 2011 feature, That's Fine had over 1 million page loads in over 150 countries. While producing the annual full length feature they put together some brilliant shorts including Shit Skiers Say and the 2012 Intersection winner The Science of Airborning (over 150,000 views on Vimeo at the time of writing). The Voleurz family created a culture around their name and that culture even had its own festival, The Volympics, a season ender event of epic proportions.
Producing amazing video content wasn't all the family did. They also designed and produced a distinct apparel line that fit their lifestyle. The youth connected long cuts and bright colors have enjoyed popularity among young shreds on and off the hill.
I have a lot of respect for what this crew has done over the last 10 years. As bummed as I am to see them go I am glad we had the Voleurz, and I am excited to see what these people do next!