Save The Waves Film Festival is an international film tour and fundraiser for Save The Waves’ environmental programs and campaigns. Movies alone can’t change the world – but the people who watch them can. Save The Waves documentary films and the Film Festival educate and inspire audiences to protect the coastline. Our interest is not to make films promoting nor glorifying activism, but rather film as activism.

STWFF 2016 was screened on four continents, including screenings in Portugal, the U.S. East and West Coasts, Hawaii, Australia, Mexico, and Chile.

Tour Dates

Tour Dates

Dual World Premiere in Bali and Portugal:

7/28 – Drifter Bali, Uluwatu, Bali

7/28 – Portuguese Surf Film Festival, Ericeira, Portugal


More To Be Announced:

U.S. East Coast

U.S. West Coast

Ensenada, Baja, Mexico


2017 Selection Committee
  • Bianca Botta

    An avid surfer, skier, and mountain biker, Bianca has been passionate about the outdoors for as long as she can remember. In 2013, Bianca joined Red Bull Media House, where she has since been creating and executing multi-faceted marketing campaigns for some of the biggest outdoor and adventure films in the world.

  • Nikki Brooks

    Santa Cruz photographer and surfer Nikki Brooks loves to document surfers on journeys near and far in search of waves less ridden.

  • Christian Charles

    British native and former professional ocean yacht racer, has an extensive creative career as a writer, art director, creative director and director. He is the President and Co-founder of mouseROAR.

  • Chris Burkard

    Chris Burkard is an accomplished explorer, photographer, creative director, speaker, and author, often traveling throughout the year to pursue the farthest expanses of Earth.

  • Danielle Clayton

    Resigning from a job and team she loved at Billabong NZ to buy a one-way ticket to the tropics, slugging back Singapore Slings enroute to the unknown, Salt Gypsy founder, Danielle Clayton, spent three seasons as a surf guide in the Maldives. 

  • Sachi Cunningham

    Sachi Cunningham is a documentary filmmaker and Professor of  Multimedia Journalism at San Francisco State University. Her award winning stories have screened at festivals worldwide, and on outlets including the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, PBS FRONTLINE, FRONTLINE/World and the Discovery Channel.

  • John Daniels

    John Daniels is a true outdoors man! John has traveled and competed in several surf competitions over the past 12 years. He has a large role in his surfing community and has ran a surf camp every summer for the past 15 years.

  • Leah Dawson

    Professional surfer Leah Dawson has created her surf career as an influential voice in raising awareness of the women’s surf culture, identity, and community. With a desire to live an eco-friendly life, and be in service to others, she’s a unique storytelling voice for the Changing Tides Foundation.

  • Troy Eckert

    Troy Eckert is Co-Founder of Kozm and former Executive VP of Global Marketing for Volcom for 20 years, where he was the first employee, first pro surfer and helped build the brand from the ground up.

  • Todd Hanson

    Todd Hanson is a media producer and ocean lover who lives in the Santa Cruz Mountains. Todd has worked as Board Sports Producer at GoPro for the last 5 years, managing, editing, and producing hundreds of media assets. 

  • Tim Lynch

    What do you get when a friendly Texas linebacker falls in love with surfing, moves to the continental edge of Southern California, co-founds Woodshed Films with his friends, and produces pioneering surf and adventure films like 180° South and A Brokedown Melody? This guy

  • Jack McCoy

    Jack “Jake” McCoy Jr.  is the internationally recognized surfing photographer, writer, director, producer, and cinematographer, creating 25 highly successful films on surfing in a life’s work of award winning movies.

2016 Filmmaker Awards

Each recognized filmmaker was awarded a curated collection of photography gear from our friends at Peak Design to help them continue to produce inspiring images and protect their equipment while traveling and working in the harshest of environmental conditions.  

Best Short Film:

“The Urchin Hunter”

directed by Morgan Maassen

Best Feature Film:

“The More Things Change”

directed by Nate Myers

Environmental Impact Award:


directed by Sarah Teale & Lisa F. Jackson

Judges’ Choice Award:

“The Sun Also Rises”

directed by Chris McClean

 Dual World Premiere in Bali and Portugal!

July 28th, 2017

Tickets & More Info TBA