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The No Comply Network

Talking Loves, Long Live Southbank and 'Dirty Sanchez' with Dan Joyce

We had a chat with the Southbank veteran about everything skateboarding.

by Jason Caines
04 January 2019, 10:38am

Dan Joyce skating Southbank. Photo: Wig Worland

You might know Dan Joyce from that time he put a lit match under his fingernail and watched it burn down to the nib, or the time he ate a slice of pube pizza, or the time he described wearing a gimp mask as making him feel "a bit like Zorro". But there's a lot more to the Dirty Sanchez star than extremely painful and/or disgusting stunts from a decade ago.

After his TV career, Dan went on to start the production company Joyce Division, where he's produced films for both big clients and his mates. His latest, which is currently untitled, is about Southbank, backing Long Live Southbank's campaign to make the iconic spot bigger by regaining access to the vacant space that's currently fenced off from use – which you can help with here.

I met Dan while he shot some new scenes for the film, to talk about his MTV days, Southbank, working with Wayne Rooney and his passion for DIY skateboards.

This interview has been edited for length.

VICE: Hi, Dan. Let's do the basics: what's your full name, where are you originally from and where do you live now?
Dan Joyce: My name is Dan Buck Joyce, I was born in London in 1976 and moved to Cornwall in 1983. I live in Kent now with my wife, daughter and dog.

How did you get into filmmaking?
I bought a video camera when I was at art college in the 90s; I started off filming for a Siesta video with Neil Urwin when I was at uni. Sadly my house got burgled when I was living in Kenton [northwest London] and everything was taken. I then had another camera when I was in LA in 1998, staying at Jake Brown's house. It got locked in his room the day I was due to fly home – sadly I never got that back. I also filmed a few clips in Dirty Sanchez; I shot Pritch [Matthew Pritchard, from Dirty Sanchez] being run over off the step ladder. I then bought a video camera when I was filming Dirty Sanchez; I started filming the drifting I was doing at the time.

Let's talk about Dirty Sanchez for a sec. How did that come about?
Ben Powell [the original and longtime editor of Sidewalk magazine] sowed the initial seed: he suggested I start my own TV show with Pritchard. Dainton was filming Pritchard Vs Dainton at the time and asked if I'd like my own section. I thought we would film some skate tricks too, but he said he wasn’t interested in that and it should just be stupid shit – quite literally. We made Pritchard Vs Dainton between 1999 and 2001, and then Dirty Sanchez started in 2002. The last time we filmed anything was the Nike advert with Wayne Rooney in 2007. We never worked together after that.

Do you still keep in touch with the rest of the cast?
We met up at a comic con in the summer – it was the first time we'd been together in ten years.

You were known for doing some of the challenges nobody else wanted to do. What motivated you to do the ones that scared the others off?
I often would think, 'What if someone did that?' No one would, so I'd end up doing it. It's good to overcome fears like that – it makes other things in life much easier.

Are there any particular stunts you'd never do again?
I wouldn't do any of that stuff ever again. I don't like going backwards – I like to see things progress and evolve; I'm not a fan of looking at the past.

Okay, to the present – I know you make boards and zines, and are generally a fan of the DIY process.
My daughter Margot is my inspiration. I've made her her own board, and she did her own graphics. I've been following Neil Blender and his Heated Wheel boards, so I made my own one. I made my own zine, C U Next Tuesday. It was a series of photos from one night filming Dirty Sanchez. I have a few left – DM me if you want one.

There's also Joyce Division, your digital agency – tell me about that.
My latest showreel is here. The name just came to me one day; I suggested it to my wife and she said, "Yeah, that's great." She's my barometer of what will work or not – she says it like it is.

Who's on the production team and what is the company's ethos?
I have a few people I work with regularly: Charlie Cook from Contagious Media, Gwil Lewis Brooke and Josh Higgins. The company ethos would probably be no plug-ins and filters. Shoot it the way it should look. Always experiment and try something new. Don’t be afraid of failure. Some of the best unexpected results can be when things go wrong.

Does Joyce Divison have any recent or upcoming releases that you want to shout about?
Yeah, I've been making a documentary with Long Live Southbank the last six months, which you're part of. It's a look back at what's happened and how the skaters saved the space and are now working alongside the Southbank centre to re-open the old space. I interviewed Dennis Crompton, the last remaining member of Archigram, the team responsible for designing the Southbank centre. It should be coming out in the new year.

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Dennis Crompton, of Archigram

Amazing. What skate brands are you really into at the moment?
I really like Blast Skates and what they stand for. [Founder] Matt [Bromley] recently asked me to shoot their latest look book – I shot video and photography. They're all about having fun on your board, which is what skateboarding is all about.

What do you think of The No Comply Network?
I think it's brilliant, and more creative skateboarders need to support each other. I would like to work with more skateboarders on creative projects. Having an area where I could add a brief and see everyone's take on it would be great.

Quick-fire skate round: when did you start skateboarding and who sponsored you?
I started in 1985 after watching Back to the Future. I was never sponsored, but I managed Air, a skate shop in Leeds. Ray and Gary from New Deal often sorted me out.

What was one of the highlights of your skate career?
Being on Vanessa was a highlight.

What is your favourite place in the world to skate?
Playing Place in Cornwall. Millendreath skate park was good, too.

What's your favourite skate spot in the UK of all-time?
Radlands.

Who are some of your all time favourite skaters?
Long Live Southbank.

Finally, how did you end up skating in the Shy FX "Raver" music video?
Yeah, that was a random one. I'm friends with Jon Wrec, who manages Shy FX. I think they wanted a variety of different people in the video. I was very surprised to be asked, to be fair. I was really pleased with it and am glad I did it.

Cheers, Dan.

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Skateboarding
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dirty sanchez
Long Live Southbank
dan joyce