Dogtown and Z-Boys

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Dogtown and Z-Boys
Dogtown and Z-Boys FilmPoster.jpeg
Directed byStacy Peralta
Written byStacy Peralta
Craig Stecyk
Produced byAgi Orsi
Daniel Ostroff
Stephen Nemeth
StarringJay Adams
Tony Alva
Bob Biniak
Chris Cahill
Paul Constantineau
Skip Engblom
Jeff Ho
Shogo Kubo
Jim Muir
Michael Ramsey (voice)
Peggy Oki
Stacy Peralta
Nathan Pratt
Wentzle Ruml IV
Allen Sarlo
Ronnie Jay
Craig Stecyk
Glen E. Friedman
Narrated bySean Penn
CinematographyPeter Pilafian
Edited byPaul Crowder
Distributed bySony Pictures Classics
Release date
  • January 19, 2001 (2001-01-19)
Running time
91 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$1,293,295

Dogtown and Z-Boys is a 2001 documentary film produced by Agi Orsi and directed by Stacy Peralta.[1] The documentary explores the pioneering of the Zephyr skateboard team in the 1970s (of which Peralta was a member) and the evolving sport of skateboarding. Using a mix of film of the Zephyr skateboard team (Z-Boys) shot in the 1970s by Craig Stecyk, along with contemporary interviews, the documentary tells the story of a group of teenage surfer/skateboarders and their influence on the history of skateboarding (and to a lesser extent surfing) culture.


Dogtown and Z-Boys, narrated by Sean Penn, begins with the history of skateboarding in Southern California and how it had been strongly influenced by the surf culture in the surrounding areas of Santa Monica and Venice, nicknamed Dogtown.[2] Surf shop owners Jeff Ho, Skip Engblom, and Craig Stecyk established the Zephyr Skateboard Team with local teenagers from broken homes.[3] The sport of skateboarding continued to evolve as the Z-Boys continued to bring edgy moves influenced by surfing. During one of California's record-breaking droughts, local backyard pools were emptied and became hotspots for these young skateboarders looking for places to skateboard.[2] The members of the Zephyr team gained notability and national attention when they competed in skateboard championships and started to receive media attention for their skills as young athletes. Testimonials and commentary provided by the members and founders of the Zephyr team combined with the rock-and-roll soundtrack and vintage footage all come together in this documentary about the history and lives of the original Z-Boys and skateboarding subculture of California.[4]


The documentary features vintage video footage and photos of the Zephyr skateboard team from the 1970s, along with contemporary interviews from the original members of the Z-Boys group.[5] The film combines the 8-mm and 16-mm vintage footage with modern editing and a soundtrack crafted from music of the 1970s era.[5]

Dogtown and Z-Boys was directed by Stacy Peralta, an original member of the Zephyr team, and written by Peralta and Craig Stecyk, a leading surf and skateboard film producer and photojournalist.[2]

The film operated on a budget of $400,000 financed by Vans, Inc.[6] Stecyk and photojournalist Glen E. Friedman, were the film's co-writer and co-producer, respectively,[7] Daniel Ostroff and Stephen Nemeth were also co-producers, and Debra MacCulloch and Christine Triano were associate producers involved with the film.[8]


The documentary includes footage, commentary, and interviews from eleven of the original members of the Z-Boys team, along with the team's co-founders, skateboarding champions, and other relevant skateboarding figures, journalists, and musicians from the era.[8]


The documentary initially gained notability after its debut at the Sundance Film Festival where it won several awards. The film was well received by many critics, including reporter Steve McKee of The Wall Street Journal who stated that the documentary had opened with "boffo reviews" from around the country.[9] The film received a rating of 92% on Rotten Tomatoes and a generally favorable rating of 76 on Metacritic.[10][11] Stephen Holden of The New York Times said the film was a "giddy, thrilling, rock 'n' roll-saturated history of skateboarding in Southern California."[2]

On the opening weekend of April 2002, Dogtown and Z-Boys made $103,355. By August 2002, the film had grossed $1,293,295 in the United States.[8] According to Peralta in a 2004 interview, "Dogtown has sold over a million DVDs and more than 700,000 VHS."[12]

Awards and recognition[edit]

Dogtown and Z-Boys was entered in the 2001 Sundance Film Festival and won two awards: the Audience Award and Directing Award.[13] The film also won the Independent Spirit Award for Best Documentary in 2001.[14]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Holden, Stephen. "Film Review: Skateboarding on top of the World During an Endless Summer". New York Times. [April 26, 2002 Archived] from the original on April 26, 2002. {{cite web}}: Check |archive-url= value (help)
  2. ^ a b c d Stephen Holden (April 26, 2002). "Dogtown and Z Boys (2001) FILM REVIEW; Skating on Top of the World During an Endless Summer". The New York Times. Retrieved July 27, 2014.
  4. ^ Steve Cave. "Dogtown and Z-Boys DVD Documentary Review". Archived from the original on July 13, 2014. Retrieved July 27, 2014.
  5. ^ a b "Dogtown and Z-Boys". Sundance Institute. 2002. Retrieved July 27, 2014.
  6. ^ Olson, Steve (2001). "Dogtown Chronicles: Stacy Peralta interview". Juice Magazine. Juice (skateboarding magazine) (53). Retrieved September 1, 2001.
  7. ^ Steinhart, Daniel (April 2002). "Stacy Peralta: Dogtown and Z-Boys". Independent Film & Video Monthly. 25 (3): 12. ProQuest 2356719.
  8. ^ a b c "Dogtown and Z-Boys (2001)". IMDb. Retrieved July 27, 2014.
  9. ^ Steve McKee (April 29, 2001). "Sun's Shining, Pool's Empty: It's a Great Day for the Z-Boys". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved July 27, 2014.
  10. ^ "Dogtown and Z-Boys (2001)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved July 27, 2014.
  11. ^ "Dogtown and Z-Boys". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved July 27, 2014.
  12. ^ Marcus, Ben (2004). "Stacy Peralta Riding Giants Sundance Surfer". Surfer. Source Interlink Media. Archived from the original on June 4, 2008. Retrieved December 10, 2010.
  13. ^ "2001 Sundance Film Festival". Sundance Institute. Retrieved July 27, 2014.
  14. ^ "Dogtown and Z-Boys (2001)". Movies & TV Dept. The New York Times. 2014. Archived from the original on August 10, 2014. Retrieved July 27, 2014.

External links[edit]