How To Be A Roll Model

Women are a rare sight in skate films. Girls are an even rarer sight. A skate film directed by a woman, created and shot almost entirely by an all women and non-binary crew and creative team, in collaboration with a girls skate crew is, unfortunately, still very rare. When Mérida Miller, the girl's coach and founder of the Dutch non-profit Project Fearless – after-school activities for girls in Amsterdam, with a focus on bravery, leadership and community impact – noticed that she couldn’t find any trick tutorials led by women to send the girls during lockdown, she decided to put together a crew and make a film for the girls, with the girls. So the next time a girl or non-binary youth was looking for a skate film, they’d find someone who looks like them with an invitation to the skate park.

UK born, Amsterdam-based Al Lewis directs ‘How To Be A Roll Model’ – very much intended pun –, a documentary about Amsterdam’s youngest girls skate crew. The film is an ode to freedom, friendship and straight up badass female power following a group of 8-14 year olds through the skatepark, getting a glimpse into their lives. They fall, they goof around, they land tricks. Everything you would expect from your regular skate video. Except for a few things.

  • AL Lewis
  • Ane Santiago
  • Emma Mallinin
    Art Director
  • Marina Coenen
  • Max Barden
    2nd Camera
  • Robyn Ransmeier
  • Mathilde Grenod
  • Merida Miller
  • Pip Williamson
    Skate Coach
  • Scotti Raz
  • Aiden Tuff
  • Finn White-Thomson
  • Neus Miraco
    Assistant Editor
  • Astrid Niari
  • Laura Calvo
  • Remi Lindenhovius
  • Andrea de Jonge
    Sound Recordist
  • Archie Presley
    Sound Designer and Mixer
  • Estelle Papougnot
    Sound Producer
  • Lacyn Clarke
    Music Sourcing/Producer
  • Mike Smaczylo
    Music Supervisor
  • Jonathan Watts
    Music Supervisor
  • Akvilina Jaskunaite
    Business Affairs
  • Alice Miskin
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Short
  • Genres:
    Skateboard, Outdoors, Kids, Education, Female, Non Binary, Empowerment
  • Runtime:
    6 minutes 28 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    February 28, 2021
  • Production Budget:
    1,500 EUR
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
    Digital, Canon
  • Aspect Ratio:
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  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - AL Lewis

Al directs and produces films for editorial and commercial clients with a special interest in documentary filmmaking.

She has worked on films for The BBC, BFI, The Guardian, Pulse Films, Some Such, Boiler Room, Dazed, Insight TV, Vice, i-D, Young Turks and global NGO’s. Most recently she has produced two television series for Vice Studios.

She has also worked with brands including Nike, WeTransfer, Levi's, Loewe, Nikon, Bacardi, Lynx, Giff Gaff and ASOS.

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Director Statement

“Growing up as a self confessed tomboy, I wished for an initiative like this when I was young. I’d never really filmed with kids before and was a bit nervous about how they’d be as contributors, but meeting the girls for the first time, I was bowled over by their energy, kindness and their willingness to learn. It was so much fun to make because of this and their open honesty and (at times hilarious) view on the world. I’m really pleased we managed to make a film that captures the bubble the girls feel in when they’re skating.”