Classic surf film comes to Avoca

A still from the movie

To celebrate the 25th anniversaries of Mark Occhilupo’s 1999 ASP (Association of Surfing Professionals) World Title win and the multi award winning film The Occumentary, legendary surf film maker Jack McCoy and Occhilupo hit the east coast of Australia in coming months, including a stopover at Avoca Beach.

It will be the first time ever the film has been shown in cinemas on the big screen and to commemorate the event, McCoy has remastered the film to give it a complete new look.

“I’ve spent hundreds of hours blowing up the film from its original VHS release as a 4:3 aspect, to 16.9 widescreen,” he said.

“When I watched it back for the first time it was like watching a whole new movie; people’s minds are going to be blown.

“Occy managed to do what many believed was the impossible.

“It’s truly one of the most inspirational and motivational stories in the history of Australian sport.”

Following a hiatus from competitive surfing, Billabong founder Gordon Merchant sent Occhilupo to Western Australia to live and train with McCoy and his family, and begin the comeback of all comebacks.

He shed 30kg, cleaned up his lifestyle and they began documenting his journey back to the pinnacle of professional surfing

It began with his iconic performance at the Bells Beach Skins event, and ultimately led to Occhilupo becoming (at the time) surfing’s oldest world champion at the ripe age of 33.

Jack McCoy has remastered the film

The film was the first ever feature documentary of a surfer and instantly became a cult classic, with many still regarding it as one of the best surf movies ever produced.

As with all of McCoy’s films, the soundtrack is next level and features the likes of the Foo Fighters, Ed Kuepper, Powderfinger and Yothu Yindi.

McCoy, Occhilupo and special guests with untold stories and never seen before footage from Occhilupo’s career, as well as a Q and A session to delve deeper into this special moment in time.

“I look back at this period as one of the most amazing experiences of my life and to have it documented in such a way is so special,” Occhilupo said.

“I can’t believe it’s been 25 years but it’s going to be great to hit the road with Jack and friends to celebrate the occasion with the surfing tribe.”

The film will be shown on Saturday, May 11, at Avoca Beach Theatre.

To purchase tickets, head to