Ten Years of Static III: Soy Panday & Danny Renaud

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"I'm pretty sure the first time I heard of Soy was at the 'Static II' premiere in London. We were standing in front of the Prince Charles Cinema, which is where all skate video premieres were happening in that era, and I believe it was right after the video had let out. Soy was hanging out with some of my London friends and he gave me a compliment on the 'Static II' video that was really, really powerful. I can't remember what he said, but it was so meaningful to me that when I got back to the States I made a point of looking him up and finding one of his recent video parts. I was really hyped on his skating and his spot choices and style were super unique. I had already been thinking a lot about how the Paris skate scene was basically non-existent in American skate culture and so when I started making plans for 'Static III' I wanted to include a skater in the Paris scene in the video. It just seemed like perfect serendipity that I had just met Soy and become a fan of his skating. It all happened pretty organically like it was just meant to be." -Josh Stewart

How did you initially link up with Josh Stewart?

As a fan, I had patiently been waiting for Static II to come out, and when it did, I sent a thank you MySpace message to Josh, who I didn’t know at the time, letting him know I was psyched on his videos. To my surprise, he knew who I was and proposed we worked on something together for Static III, which seemed absolutely surreal to me.

What was filming like? How long did you film for? Any favorite memories from filming, or a particular story or trip that really stands out? What, and why?

We went to India with Josh, Ed Selego and Guru Khalsa, but all we managed to get was a 16mm shot in front of the Taj Mahal, a wallride, and some ambiance for the intro of my part, because Josh thought he’d rather nearly die of an Indian bacteria attack. After that, I went to Miami for two weeks, but I was recovering from an ankle injury and had lost a lot of confidence, and only filmed two tricks. Also, driving to spots in a car for hours doesn’t work out for me, and I must say, Miami was a lot of that. At the end of the trip, when Josh drove me back to the airport, I thought he was gonna say we should forget about doing a part, and I was about to be quicker and tell him myself, when instead he said he’d come to Paris to film with me. He then did come to stay with me in Paris for a week, and we filmed 90% of my part there, as well as most of Vivien’s guest tricks. That was definitely the most productive week of my life in terms of filming. The remaining 10% was filmed during various Planet Earth trips and stuff like that.

Were you satisfied with your part, as a whole? Who had your favorite part?

Yes, for sure. I love the song he chose, how he edited it, and I was proud to have filmed all of it in a week’s time. Two of the longest lines, the one with the kickflip nose manny nollie tre at the City Hall and the one at the Eiffel Tower, were filmed the same day, and they’re both crazy [spots] in terms of tourists. I was happy to pull those off in one day, considering the constant flow of tourists walking at the end of both lines unaware of my efforts. Pat and Nate’s styles are ill, I think they had my favorite parts.

 Wallride in Delhi, India. Photo by Josh Stewart

Wallride in Delhi, India. Photo by Josh Stewart

Where was your career at the time? How did being a part of the Static series impact your career? What kind of feedback did you get?

I was skating for Landscape out of UK at the time, but thought I was pretty much going nowhere, and was debating what I should do with my life. I was thirty years old, with bad ankles, making no money, and living on a kid’s dream far into adulthood. I got a lot of good feedback, but it’s always hard to tell if people are just being polite. I was mostly happy that I did realize my unspoken dream of having a part in an American east coast video, since this was what I grew up watching. As for the impact, it did help finding distributions for Magenta when we started the brand a couple years later. Josh himself started distributing the brand in the United States. Uru/Kukunochi in Japan was already distributing Landscape, so he followed us too, but our connection to Static was a big plus, I’m sure. The main impact is I made great friends through this video: Josh, Steve Brandi, Pat, they’re people I see or talk to regularly, people I work with too. That’s a beautiful thing.

A decade on, where are you now, and how do you feel about your inclusion in the Static legacy?

A decade later, we’re not far from being a decade into Magenta, I’m not especially richer, I still have ankle pain, I’m still skating, I’m still part of skateboarding, I’m doing what I love, making board graphics, and am basically grateful. I’m very stoked to be included in the Static legacy, still not sure how I pulled that one off...

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"Danny was always the absolute perfect skater to be in a Static video. Even at the age of like, thirteen, he had impeccable taste in spots, trick selection, etc. But soon after I first started filming with him, he got brought under the Alien/Habitat umbrella and ended up out in Los Angeles and traveling for the Habitat video. I would've LOVED to have had the opportunity to introduce Danny to the world through a Static part, but that ended up happening with his 'Mosaic' video part and actually Joe Castrucci fucking killed it. So, in hindsight, that was the perfect introduction for Danny's talents. But I think it was inevitable that he would eventually have a Static part, so one day I think we ended up skating together and he just asked me like "I heard you're doing a new video... can I have a part?" That's all I needed to hear. It was tricky though because at this point Danny had a reputation for being tough to work with, so I tried to balance out time to film him separately from everyone else because I was worried he could make the filming experience tough for the other Static skaters. Unfortunately, because of that, he didn't end up on any of the trips we did for the video. It's hard to believe that when you watch his part now, because it's so solid and strong. But, if I hadn't been such a pussy and at least brought him on the London trip, his part probably would've been mental because he was so fucking talented. His part is still one of my favorites parts in the video, and Danny is one of my favorite dudes to this day, so I'm really stoked he's part of the Static family and legacy." - Josh Stewart

How did you initially link up with Josh Stewart?

When I was little, I basically lived at the Skatepark of Tampa, I rode for World Market/SPOT. Back then, Josh was living in Tampa and I would see him skating the park and filming in the streets. I think the first time I ever spoke to him was in a Publix parking lot, in downtown Tampa, while out skating with Steve Brandi. I think I might've been fourteen. Sometime after Static II, I heard Josh was making a third video. While I was out skating with him, I was like, “What’s up? Am I getting a part?” And he was like, “Of course.” That was basically it.

What was filming like? How long did you film for? Any favorite memories from filming, or a particular story or trip that really stands out? What, and why?

The filming was pretty random for me because, overall, I only really shot with Josh maybe 15 times in two years? I was such a nightmare at the time, so Josh, understandably, made it really difficult for me to meet up with him and other skaters while filming. I never went on one trip, but I almost went to London with them. Josh said if I went, there was a strict no drinking clause. I agreed, but still couldn’t make it there because my sponsor only paid for half the flight, so I just spent that money on booze and stayed home. That’s the story of the trip that never happened, that mostly sticks out for me.

Were you satisfied with your part, as a whole? Who had your favorite part?

When it comes to my part, I liked the editing and song, but looking back, I do kind of wish I had concentrated more on my skating, rather than getting fall-down drunk all the time. So, that being said, I definitely felt it could have been better, but that’s on me. My favorite Static part is, hands down, Jake Rupp’s part from Static. That Indian sitar music and all that steeze was so sick, I wanted to be that part when I was fifteen. Also, the Philly Four part in Static II was really good, coupled with The Big Lebowski song. I remember people going nuts at the premiere when Ricky Oyola ollied that big pyramid thing at the end. In Static III, I liked the New Jersey Minute, definitely a good minute. Nate Broussard’s part was well put together, and he has good style.

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Where was your career at the time? How did being a part of the Static series impact your career? What kind of feedback did you get?

My career was definitely in a dodgy place. At the time, I was riding for Stereo and iPath. While filming for Static III, I would hear rumors that iPath was going to sack half of their riders and that I was most likely one of them. So, that was a nice, this feeling of being in a constant state of limbo. The only thing that was concrete was that I was filming for Static; everything else in my career was up in the air.

I didn't stick around long enough for me to see an impact from my part. Shortly after the video, I had a serious accident which left me unable to skateboard for quite some time. So, I really wasn’t seen or on the scene.

A decade on, where are you now, and how do you feel about your inclusion in the Static legacy?

I’m in a good place now. I’m back in Miami with the girl of my dreams, we got the farmhouse, a pet pig, hella dogs, and I got a marble ledge at the house to skate. I can’t complain. Life’s mad aight.

I’m proud and honored to be a part of the Static legacy. The whole style of skating in the videos embodies what skating is to me. The skating is raw in a sense that 99% of the skaters are not riding for big corporate sponsors where you have to go out and film this handrail trick in a school yard to stay relevant. The skating is just ideas that semi normal guys want to do and film and it comes out sick and not forced. Cheers, Señor Danny.

Interviews conducted by Andrew Murrell