“The story of Jesse becoming a quadriplegic while surfing is so
emotional. His story of getting back in the water and surfing 15-foot
waves in Fiji, diving with Great White Sharks, skydiving, etc., etc. has
changed my life and those that have seen it are affected (so I've been
told) for days after.”
—Mark Jacobs, director and executive producer of Jesse's Story, a documentary about Jesse Billauer, a Pacific Palisades surfer who was signed by Hurley but watched his pro career end after severing his spinal cord while riding waves. Billauer was coaxed back into the water by many of his would-be competitors, including nine-time world champ Kelly Slater and Hurley team member Rob Machado of Newport Beach. Jesse's Story also includes contributions from Bob Hurley, Jack
Johnson, Ben Harper, Shane Dorian, the late Christopher Reeve,
and Jesse's father and brother, George and Josh Billauer. Johnson and Harper also turn up on the soundtrack, as do Jason Mraz, G. Love, Ziggy
Marley, Donavon Frankenreiter and Matt Costa.
Jesse's Story plays at 6 tonight at Edwards Island Cinemas. Go here
for ticket info.