Brandon Hooper and producer Jim Meenaghan - who together wrote the story -
went directly to Frosty Hesson and Jay's widow, Kim Moriarity, for permission to
bring Jay and Frosty's journey to the big screen. Other filmmakers had
previously approached them, but Hooper and Meenaghan's enthusiasm and ideas made
Kim and Frosty comfortable with the idea of a film inspired by Jay's life.
Hooper notes, "Kim and Frosty have been supportive throughout the entire
project, and we were grateful they entrusted us to tell the story. We wanted to
do justice to them and, especially, to Jay."
When director Curtis Hanson came on board the project, he joined Hooper and
Meenaghan in Santa Cruz for scouting expeditions and research. "I met Frosty and
Kim, and had long talks with them," Hanson says. "We told them our film would
resonate because everyone will identify with the struggles of these characters,
and knowing that they're based on real people will strengthen that
identification and the emotional connections."
Gerard Butler and Jonny Weston, like the producers and directors, immersed
themselves in the world of Jay and Frosty. Weston shares, "I came to Santa Cruz
and basically got adopted by Frosty and Kim and by some of Jay's closest
friends. They took me in and they told me everything they know about Jay."
CHASING MAVERICKS was filmed on locations where much of Jay's life unfolded,
including Santa Cruz, Half Moon Bay and Mavericks itself, as well as residential
streets where the real-life characters' actual homes had been situated. "It's
beautiful that we were able to film where everything really happened," says
Butler. "It's great for the story because it gives it an additional layer of
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