If youre an angler, youve probably dreamed of starring in your own fishing show.
Boise anglers Jeremiah Heitke and his brother, Dustin, made it happen, and learned that the dream and the reality sometimes differ.
The result is Two Brothers Fly Fishing, which chronicles their adventures fishing across the country and south to Belize.
Their trips include a variety of fishing, including trophy trout, bass, bonefish, sturgeon (on a fly rod, no less) and some great footage of the fun and pitfalls involved with catching those fish.
Ive had a lifelong love affair with water and fish, Jeremiah said. My family is steeped in a strong outdoor tradition, so its in my blood. When Im not fishing, I work as a fish biologist for an environmental consulting firm here in Boise.
Jeremiah answered some questions about what it takes to bridge the gap between a fishing dream and a finished product:
Q: You had some great fishing trips in the video. Why did you want to complicate those trips by trying to get them on film?
A: I was inspired by some of the do-it-yourself fly fishing films that started popping up a few years back.
I liked the films, but didnt love them. There was a lack of diversity, the fish were too small, and there was way too much dialogue.
I wanted to follow the tradition of surf and skateboard films; minimize the dialogue and let the footage speak for itself. Another motivation was to share my love of fly fishing and hopefully motivate people to get outside.
Q: With the money spent on fishing videos seeming to reach Hollywood budgets, was it daunting to try to do it all yourself? How much time was involved, and what was the most challenging part of the film-making process?
A: All said and done, the film took five years to complete. It was extremely daunting, but Im Norwegian, which is to say stubborn, relentless and tenacious.
There were so many hurdles and pitfalls. There were also casualties; two cameras valued at $6,000 didnt make it. One vaulted through the air end over end after my brother crashed our drift boat into a concrete wall on the Bighorn River in Montana. I can see it in slow motion like it was yesterday. Another camera took a swim on my birthday.
Getting set back six months because of a crashed hard drive was a bummer. The biggest challenge, however, was negotiating licenses for the soundtrack. I contacted the managers of Wilco every week for months until they finally relented and agreed to work with me. Never underestimate the power of polite persistence.
Q: I was impressed by the size of the fish you caught. Several of those fish could qualify for fish of a lifetime. Was that a typical year for you, or were you just lucky to have a camera along?
A: It was definitely one of our best years. The 4 1/2-foot sturgeon was an amazing surprise. Wed tangled with them before, but never landed one.
Filming couldnt have ended better; my brother and I both landed the biggest brown trout of our lives on the last day of the season. Both were just under 3 feet and 20 pounds. We couldnt have scripted a better ending.
Q: Whats your favorite fishing-related movie, or fishing video?
A: South Island Sampler by Gary Borger. Its an oldie but a goodie, which profiles the South Island of New Zealand, an anglers Shangri-La.
Growing up I would check out every book and video from the library; this one blew my mind. The rivers were so clear, the fish were so big. I knew that I had to go, so I did, twice.
Q: Lets say Steven Spielberg wanted to hire you to film fishing for one species of fish in one place. Where are you going and what are you going to try and catch?
A: Well, if Spielberg is involved, there must be movie magic. Its not the where Id go, but the when. Id be a time-travelling fly fisherman chasing all types of fish across the ages.
Q: Any plans for a sequel or prequel?
A: Definitely, Ive got more ideas than time. Although completing this film 95 percent by myself was very rewarding, Im ready to work with a team. Heron Fly Fishing will be accepting applications soon!
Getting a copy: Two Brothers Fly Fishing is available for $14.99 at the Idaho Angler, 1682 Vista Ave., and for $17.99 on Amazon.com. There are two clips on YouTube and Two Brothers Fly Fishing is on Facebook.
Roger Phillips: 377-6215, Twitter: @rogeroutdoors