Ride To Survive with Tomomi Nishikubo

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Go fishing and make fire with Tomomi Nishikubo as he tries to survive being shipwrecked on an island – with the help of his bike. We’ll admit we missed this video when it was first released, but the recent addition of a ‘making of’ video has put it under our (entertained and bemused) noses.

All images: Naoki Morita

The finished video is pretty bonkers – some impressive tricks, some silly ones, all strung together with a tenuous but funny storyline. We do have concerns though – there looks to be a lot of leylandii being used in the tricks. That stuff is a nasty skin irritant. Someone could get hurt.

You’ll see from the behind the scenes video that plenty of the tricks do hurt and there are many many attempts behind each successful shot.

We’ve been sent this Q&A session with Tomomi about Ride to Survive and the making-of process that documented in the now released behind-the-scenes clip:

How did you get the idea for the video? 

I always talk to my friends about possible next projects. That’s actually where the idea of riding on an uninhabited island comes from. The ideas for the tricks come from my sketch book. I always have it with me and write down what comes to my head. 

How many attempts did it take to nail the tricks? 

Most tricks took us between 50 and 200 attempts. But sometimes I took only few takes! It always depends on the weather, the sunlight and my personal condition.

Which trick was the most difficult?

The front flip from the slackline was the most difficult trick. It’s a world-first trick. So there is no guideline, no example… I had to imagine everything about how my body and the bike will move and interact with the slackline system. It took us all day to build up and test the slackline system. I made this trick after several attempts the next day.

What was the most difficult part?

The hardest part of this project was definitely that I had to build all sections by myself. That’s how we spent most of our time. Shooting depended strongly on the weather, particularly the ground conditions. We needed two sunny days before we could start to film. 

What was the most fun part? 

Fishing by rear wheel was the most fun part of the shoot. I actually fished a real fish with my fishing rod. I couldn’t stop laughing. Of course, I ate it and it was the most delicious fish I have ever eaten! Hahaha!

Tell us a little about your crew? 

It was filmed by two camera men and one photographer. So many friends helped with the setup and the building for the tricks. Daisuke, the first videographer is a mountain bike filmmaker and we also used to ride together. The second videographer, Jidai, is a young travel filmmaker. He is currently living the van-life around Japan. Naoki is the photographer who always works with me. I want to say huge thanks to everyone!

Follow Tomomi on Instagram here to keep up to date with all he’s doing.

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