Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Vol. CLIV, Issue 5
Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Filmmaker alums bring snowy thrills to campus with ‘Wyoming Triumph’

Early next month, Whitman alumni Chris Kitchen ’02 and Sam Pope ’01 will visit campus and screen their film, “Wyoming Triumph.” Billed as “a working man’s ski and snowboard feature,” the film is a documentary centered on skiing and snowboarding in different locations around the titular state.

Whitman’s screening of “Wyoming Triumph” will kick off a tour of screening around the Northwest, including stops in Seattle and Portland. The film will be shown in Kimball Theater at 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 1, followed by a question-and-answer session.

Kitchen and Pope, both of whom collaborated on producing and directing the film, found inspiration in the film classes they took at Whitman, particularly those taught by Professor of Rhetoric and Film Studies Robert Sickels. In between commercial work and other small independent features, they spent two years exploring and filming the destinations featured in “Wyoming Triumph,” all of which were shot in Wyoming.

With “Wyoming Triumph,” the duo sought to create a film that differed from typical “action sports” documentaries, featuring locations that Kitchen referred to as “the un-destinations of skiing.”

“The point of the movie is kind of that everybody in the action-sports world is going to these exotic locations and doing, like, crazy things, and we’re just trying to show that, hey, you can have adventure anywhere: you could have it in your own backyard, you just need to go out and seek it,” said Kitchen.

Because the film is not a product of the studio system, Kitchen and Pope both worked extensively on the film in all stages of production.

“On the film, I did everything from storyboarding and fundraising during pre-production, and putting a tour together once everything’s done,” said Pope.

Before getting to work on future projects, the duo will continue to promote “Wyoming Triumph” for some time. Afterwards, they hope to tackle transferring a couple of books to the screen, including Fred Pearce’s “When Rivers Run Dry”.

“We hope to build on the momentum created by the film,” said Pope.

For now, the two are focusing on spreading the story and message of “Wyoming Triumph” around the country. Whether or not you are involved in winter sports, the film’s message may well prove to be universal.

“It’s the story of exploration, really,” said Kitchen.

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