Fred Beckey is a true American pioneer, with an unparalleled list of alpine accomplishments under his belt over the past century. Known for an uncompromising dedication to the mountains with his record string of first ascents and groundbreaking new routes, Fred Beckey has achieved mythical status in mountaineering circles.
DIRTBAG Teaser 1: The Mystery of Fred Beckey
He carries a polarizing reputation as a hero and a rebel, his name evoking simultaneous worship and vitriol. Despite his controversial nature, Beckey’s scholarly writings reveal a greater depth to this man, captured in more than a dozen published books that continue to inspire new generations of climbers and environmentalists.
Now at age 93, after a lifetime of rejecting societal norms in his single-minded quest for peaks, Beckey is ready to tell his story for the first time.
Colorado-based documentary director Dave O’Leske spent the past decade filming Fred Beckey with unprecedented access, getting to know the mysterious man in the mountains of China, across North America and in his Pacific Northwest home.
O’Leske filmed hundreds of hours of new footage while gathering a wealth of exclusive materials from the Fred Beckey Archives, including thousands of Beckey’s personal photos, films, hand-written journals and route maps dating back to the 1930s. More than 30 additional interviews with some of the world’s greatest climbers–including Yvon Chouinard, Layton Kor, Conrad Anker, Royal Robbins, Reinhold Messner and Jim Whittaker–attest to Beckey’s iconic impact on the sport.
In 2016, O’Leske partnered with a crew of award-winning Seattle filmmakers producers Jason Reid, Andy McDonough and Colin Plank, editor Darren Lund, co-producer Adam Brown and co-executive producer Colin Baxter whose collective past credits include the hit climbing documentary “K2: Siren of the Himalayas” (2012), the Webby Award-winning “Sonicsgate: Requiem for a Team” (2009), the Emmy® Award-winning “Man Zou: Beijing to Shanghai” (2010) and the narrative drama “Eden” (2013), which won Audience Awards for Best Narrative at SXSW and the Milan International Film Festival.
“Dirtbag: The Legend of Fred Beckey” is currently in post-production targeting a release in early 2017. The filmmakers will continue to put out additional trailers and extended bonus content this summer.