In May of 1983 “California” magazine published an article written by Ehud Yonay. The title of that article was “Top Guns” and it told the story of naval aviators perfecting their skills at the Miramar Naval Air Station in southern California. That article caught the attention of a major Hollywood producer who thought that just maybe the basic concept could be turned into a very exciting movie. The rights were bought, several scripts were written and in three years one of the best movies ever made was released to enthusiastic movie goers worldwide. “Top Gun” rocked the world. Its depiction of naval aviation was roaringly inaccurate, but its entertainment value was and remains one of the most fun movies to watch in the history of the medium. I mention this just to prove the point that great things can flow from humble beginnings.
Consequently I will now introduce you to a vastly different project which while different on virtually every level is nevertheless a project that does share two commonalities with “Top Gun.” One is that it has emerged from a very humble beginning, and the other is that this project also looks very seriously at “the need for speed.”
Roughly eight years ago now a nice family from America’s Pacific Northwest became infatuated with the sport of inline speed skating. Very quickly the children embraced the sport and the parents fully supported their kids. As it turns out inline speed skating is a very fascinating sport and there is abundant speed. No missiles and bombs and carrier landings to be sure, but plenty of speed.
It didn’t take long for this unique family to jump fully into the inline speed skating world with an unprecedented level of commitment. Nothing has changed save for two of their children getting married and moving on but to this day there are ten of them all living in and traveling in their motor home; going from one speed skating competition to another. Along the way this genuinely amazing family has won thousands of trophies and medals but far more importantly thousands of friends. This is one extraordinary family, their name is Akana and in just a few short days a documentary film “The Amazing Akanas” will be released worldwide through Amazon.com.
Now I will make it abundantly clear that the thirty minute documentary about the Akana family and their passion, inline speed skating, has some entertainment value but it falls far short of the magnificent movie “Top Gun.” That, however, is not the point. The point is that their story is so unique, so compelling and so fluid that what needs to happen is for their lives to get captured on reality TV. To that end I have committed to helping them reach out to reality TV producers until the right connection is made. For everyone with an interest you can learn much more by visiting this web link: http://ronirwin.net/tv-quest.html.
But way beyond that goal lies a much more important objective. The Akana family and their many friends in the world of inline speed skating are devoted to the notion of getting their beloved sport into the Olympic Games. It is a noble and proper goal and a goal that can, with commitment, be achieved. Having been myself fully introduced to this incredible sport I truly believe it would add a fantastic element to the Olympic Games. Go visit the link above and odds are you to will become a fan. This is no F-14 but it is sure is one heck of a lot of fun.
Copyright 2014 Ron Irwin