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"Climbing a mountain isn’t enough for me," says Elia Saikaly. One of the peaks of his life was an interactive soccer game he organized between youth in Canada and street kids in Kenya. The entire soccer tournament was streamed live on an $8 USB internet key. As for shooting video on altitude, Elia says he thrives on the challenge due to his background in powerlifting (world record in dead-lift, 525lbs at the age of 17).

Image by Elia Saikaly courtesy Elia Saikaly, SOURCE
In 2007 Canadian Sean Egan (right) died of a heart attack at age 63 when climbing Everest with Elia. The late doctor's wish to inspire others catapulted his young film-maker, "into the world of adventure and climbing as I dedicated my life to honoring his."
Image by Elia Saikaly courtesy Elia Saikaly, SOURCE
Time-lapsing cameras under the stars Elia Saikaly captured this image September 29, 2011 11:49 PM of climbers in their 3d attempt to summit Cho Oyu.
Image by Elia Saikaly courtesy Elia Saikaly/findinglife.ca, SOURCE
Retracing Sean Egan's footsteps, in 2010 Elia and Finding Life summited Everest and broadcast a real-time web-series for 20 000 Canadian students. "The real-time concept creates a great deal of momentum," he says.
Image by Elia Saikaly courtesy Elia Saikaly, SOURCE
In terms of viewership the biggest adventure video event this year took place online, outside the usual distribution channels. "It used to be an MTV generation, now it’s a YOUTUBE generation and competition is fierce," Elia says, to beat the "farting cat."
courtesy Google YouTube, SOURCE
"In my personal experience, failure, disappointment, vulnerability and honesty throughout my expedition content has always led to good connections with the viewer. People need to be able to relate." (Image unrelated to Elia).
It’s all about story, Elia says, "this is where I think adventure filmmakers need to focus."

As for beating video games, "I’d like to think we can engage kids, yes," Elias said. "We don’t have the millions of dollars to develop our ideas, but we have the advantage of emotions and realism."

The future of adventure film and television: Elia Saikaly - real time, short and fast

Posted: Dec 20, 2012 04:39 pm EST

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