Between Snow & Stars

BETWEEN SNOW AND STARS from Tom Vaillant on Vimeo.

How did this project start? Was it a need to accomplish something in the event of an untimely death? Or was it driven by a distorted sense of self? Maybe I was just searching for a more purposeful way to live my life, and embarking on this project certainly made me feel that way. Or did I just want to kickstart my career? It might have been all the above.

The only thing I do know (aside that I know nothing) is that - like many before me - Everest embodied an internal struggle as much as an external challenge. In the end my only partial regret was choosing Everest, that decision definitely stemmed from ego, any lost mountain would have been perfect for the film. That being said, I wouldn't be who I am today without that decision, nor would I have met the wonderful people that became the protagonists of my film, and my life.

After months of mental, physical and financial preparation, I failed. After running a marathon and buying shitloads of secondhand gear, I failed. Somewhere between Camp 3 and Camp 4, weighing twenty kilograms less than I had a month before and an already bad back aching like hell, I decided I wasn’t going to make it, and turned around. Over the years, that failure has taught me more than summiting ever could have.

Building a strategy requires brutal self-honesty, if not any calculations you've made on your reality and what you are capable of are based on skewed foundations, the house of cards crumbles. I hadn’t been honest with myself, neither my skills nor my experience were on par with the demands set by the challenge. Never again. Today I'm ruthless with myself, I tear every inch of delusion apart to determine the best course forward. I keep making mistakes, fortunately just not as monumental.

I also learned that my ego wasn’t all that important. Whereas back then I compared myself to others, today I remind myself to be better than the person I used to be, point. On the way down I also discovered what I actually gave a fuck about. I didn’t give too many fucks about summiting Everest (although it certainly would've been nice) and today I appreciate the lesson much more than the missed achievement. What I did give a fuck about was the journey, the documentary I wanted to create, and to take what I'd learn along the way into the next venture.

Between Snow & Stars Between Snow and Stars follows passionate explorers in the Arctic and on Everest in 2011. This film was started as an opportunity to share stories and instil curiosity for unclimbed mountains and unseen places.

SPONSORED BY Vimeo, Rhino Camera Gear

FUNDED BY Kickstarter

ATHLETES Tim Mosedale, Arnaud Marchais, Jon Gupta, Alex Moiroud, Adam Booth, Yoan Yoshi, Quentin Jourde

OFFICIAL SELECTION Kendal Film Festival,
Lookout Wild Film Festival
, Mountain Film Festival,
Hip Trip Film Festival

CREW Directed by Chroniclr, Charles H. Joslain Original Music by Scott Stevens Trailer Editing by Jennifer Borcea Colour Grading by Theo Ribeiro Sound Design by Zbigniew Malecki Sound Supervision by Rafael Kapelinski Score Mixing by Les Brockman Score Recorded by Ben Mason VFX by Aleksandrs Valters Creative Designs by Sean Strong Filmed by Chroniclr, Charles H. Joslain, Adam Booth, Jon Gupta Timelapse Photography by Elia Saikaly, Phil Hart Additional Stills Photography by Stuart Holmes