When you think bowling movies, you probably think of comedies like The Big Lebowski or Kingpin. Wonderful and ridiculous in their own right, they don't really shed any light on what it's like to be a real-life professional bowler.
Can you imagine spending your entire life on a quest for the perfect strike? Probably not, so Joey Daoud, local filmmaker and founder of Coffee and Celluloid, is doing his best to paint you that picture.
Daoud's latest project, Strike, is a short documentary on one of bowling' rising stars, Bill Fong. The film follows Fong as he attempts to bowl a perfect 900. That's 36 consecutive strikes. Only 21 people in the history of bowling have ever done that. He hopes to be lucky number 22, but luck has nothing to do with it. Fong won't stop until he perfects his craft.
So why bowling? "I bowled as a kid down here and it was something I really enjoyed. I stopped in high school and it's one of those things that's kind of on the outskirts, no one really pays attention to it," Daoud said of the sport.
Still from Strike
After reading a profile of the bowling phenom, Daoud decided he had to make the movie. With the assistance of a skeleton crew, Daoud made the drive to Texas to meet up with Fong and shoot the documentary over the course of a week.
"When the story first happened, he made the front page of the Dallas sports section, and no bowler has ever done that before. He made the state record for Texas," Daoud said.
Fong, 48, runs his own business, Bowling Medic Pro Shop. The game has been a friend to him since he was 13. After a 10 year hiatus from the lanes, a stroke and heart surgery, he hasn't given up on the one thing he's been passionate about his whole life.
According to Daoud, "You don't have to be into bowling to appreciate the story behind this."
Daoud is a graduate of FSU's Film School and also recently released his first feature documentary Bots High, chronicling kick ass robot building high schoolers of Miami. He's also the man behind "Space Miami," one of several Borscht films you can watch for free online.
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Visit Strike's Kickstarter campaign to track the film's progress.