WAIMEA — The film “Andy Irons: Kissed By God” will have showings at the Waimea Theater beginning Friday.
The documentary, released by extreme sports media company Teton Gravity Research, tells the story of surfer and Kauai native Andy Irons.
“When we did the family showing, the premiere here a couple of weeks back, they gave out 250 tickets and I think 230 people showed up,” said Thomas Nizo, Waimea Theater manager. “I know it’s a movie that’s anticipated. I know people want to come and see this movie.”
It highlights Irons’ rise to becoming a three-time world champion but also tells the narrative of his struggles with bipolar disorder and opioid addiction leading up to his untimely death in 2010.
The film features interviews with brother Bruce Irons, wife Lyndie Irons and surfers Kelly Slater, Joel Parkinson, Nathan Fletcher and Sunny Garcia.
A percentage of the money made from ticket sales will be donated to Kauai’s flood victims.
Tickets are available to purchase online at www.waimeatheater.com or www.tetongravityresearch.com/films/andy-irons-kissed-by-god/tour.
Tickets will also be sold at the door, Nizo said.
Nizo has seen the film and said it really drives home certain viewpoints considering the recent deaths of fashion designer Kate Spade and celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain.
“It’s eye-opening. He’s a world champion pro surfer. The eye-opening part about the film is that it’s really in your face,” he said. “It’s really truthful. It’s really frank. They tell it like it is. They show him in his high times and the very, very low point until where he passes.
“It just puts everything in perspective. Just because you make a lot of money, even like that girl Spade and Anthony Bourdain, they’re megastars but they’re still not happy. That’s what the eye-opening part is. You might think all of the money and all of the stardom, you should be happy. But, you’re not. Just be blessed for what you have, kind of thing.”
General admission is $15. Showtimes are:
w Friday, June 15: 7:30 p.m.
w Sunday, June 17: 4 p.m., 6 p.m.
w Monday, June 18: 7 p.m.
w Tuesday, June 19: 7 p.m.
w Wednesday, June 20: 7 p.m.
w Thursday, June 21: 7 p.m.
The film had its world premiere in April on Los Angeles, then had its nationwide one-night release on May 31 and is currently touring the country.
While there is not a rating on the film, Nizo suggests parental guidance for young viewers because of some language.
“There’s a lot of swearing, so it’s probably rated R,” Nizo said. “But when we had the premiere here, there we kids 9, 10 and 11 — kids that were into surfing and whatnot. They got to see it first hand what that can all bring. I think it would be good if kids in that sport sees it first hand.”
Nick Celario, sports writer, can be reached at 245-0437 or firstname.lastname@example.org.