Wondros Directing Duo Riess|Hill Celebrate Official Selection Of “Hula Girl” At The 2018 Tribeca Film Festival
Wondros directing duo Chris Riess and Amy Hill, better known as Riess|Hill, celebrate the official selection of “Hula Girl” at the 2018 Tribeca Film Festival. The ambitious short film tells the untold story behind one of the biggest fads in modern American history, the Hula Hoop, as guided by 94-year-old Joan Anderson who waited 60 years to prove that “a gentleman’s handshake” was hardly a deal.
“Hula Girl” brings to life the true story of Anderson, an American mother of Australian descent, that brought the hoop and name to Wham-O in 1958 where unfortunate naïveté thwarted credit and monetary compensation for her idea, twisting the true origin of its name and discovery. Through a remarkable blend of fate and familial connections, Riess|Hill stumbled upon Anderson’s story and dove in after their first encounter/interview with her, thoroughly impressed by her energy and ability to articulate a series of events that would have left most people angry for life. The directing duo brought long-time Editor Bill Chessman along for the journey, who shares their sensibilities for story and also loved Anderson the minute he saw the footage.
“Our lunches with Joan in her dining room were always interesting and her willingness to let us follow her through her halls with the bamboo hoop that sits behind her door for six decades was entertaining,” share Riess|Hill. “We will never know the motivations behind the lies that were perpetuated and almost everyone involved is now deceased. Joan gets the last word and we are grateful that we got to make that happen.”
Chris Riess and Amy Hill are a married directing team and were the first duo/first female director ever nominated for the prestigious DGA Commercial Directing Award. The pair met at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena and have garnered Effies, Clios and Webby awards for their work in addition to being a part of the New Directors Showcase at Cannes. Major companies such as Pepsi, Bank of America, Siemens, P&G, USMC and Chase have worked with them to create branded content that is distinguished for its candor and insight.