The Icelandic hammer dropper, interviewed.
If you’ve been living in a cave in North Korea for the last couple of years you won’t have witnessed the explosion of this young Icelandic guy into snowboarding's limelight. Those exposed to the outside world, however, will know Halldor Helgason is the Rookie of the Year that bagged X-Games gold, already has a couple of heavy film parts in the bag and this season we’ll see him jump aboard the Pirate ship.
We caught up with Halldor to shoot the scheiße, find out what he’s all about and see what the future holds for this budding superstar slasher.
When you won X-Games gold you hoped the people on the news back home would talk about you because they never talk about snowboarding. What's up with that?
Yeah, snowboarding has always just been like a joke or a hobby, but after I won X-Games they saw that it was maybe a little bit more, and they actually talked a lot about it in the news, so that was cool.
Halldor's insane couple of stompers at the X-Games. 100 out of 100. Bang!
What’s Iceland like as a place to grow up and how did you get into snowboarding?
Iceland is a really nice place to grow up in; super mellow and most people are nice. I got in to snowboarding after I saw my brother Eiki ride, he started like a year before me, so after I saw him I decided to try it out as well, and after that I haven't stopped.
There’s some pretty rad stuff on your website, Helgasons.com, that’s made us laugh in Onboard HQ. Who’s responsible for the stuff that goes on there? Do you think there’s anything that you wouldn’t put up? The pregnant fantasies love doll is pretty out there...
Yeah we just put up stuff that we think is funny, but we have had stuff that’s just too nasty so we can’t put that up. Too bad, I would be stoked if we could be more nasty on there!
I assume that every interview you’ve done since January you’ve been asked about your perfect scores in the big air that bagged you X-Games gold. Your frontside double cork 1080 was uber steezy, you looked like you could have had a sleep mid-rotation – it was effortless. But could you talk us through it one more time?
First of all, I didn't even think I would make it in to X-Games big air because I was just on the waiting list. And then someone didn't show up so I got to join in, and I just decided to try it and see what would happen. Somehow I ended up getting first place, that was pretty damn random!
Which riders have influenced you the most?
The riders that have influenced me the most are JP Walker, Jeremy Jones, Eiki Helgason, Gulli Gudmundson, Eero Ettala and many others.
Halldor, along with his bro Eiki and erstwhile filmer Johannes, drop regular funny, irreverent and downright sick clips to their site regularly. This one basically sums 'em up.
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You’re a real rail junkie - how often do you practice? Do you have a couple of rails in your back yard?
Me, my brother and Gulli always start riding the Icehall in our hometown, Akureyri, in like September, it's so fun and such a good way to learn new stuff.
Now, premiere time is upon us. Which film are you most looking forward to seeing?
It’s going to be fun to see the Forum movie, Videograss, Tech9 (Finger on Da Trigger) movie and many others. There are so many movies now - it’s crazy! It’s always fun to see how the movies you were in turned out as well.
You’ve got two impressive movie roles already with Standard Films’ Black Winter and Factor’s They Came From. How do you up your game from one movie to the next?
Thanks! All you got to do is snowboard, think of tricks you want to try, and try your best all the time and see what happens.
Halldor's part from Black Winter last year.
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You must be super stoked to be in the new Pirates film. What can we expect to see from you in Hooked and what was your favourite shoot from the whole movie?
Yeah filming with Pirates this year was awesome; all the guys were super mellow, and a nice crew to film with. I think the Pirates movie is going to turn out sick. My favorite trip of this whole season was riding rails in Iceland. It’s always so easy after riding at home, you just go home and get some good food and chill.
Being one of the younger Pirates, what have you learnt from the older guys in the crew?
I learnt how to dress up like a pirate and make myself more dirty.
What tricks are you working on for the new season?
Man, I don't plan that far ahead. Just going to have to wait and see what happens - I don't like claiming stuff.
After last years Rookie of the Year and X-Games gold there’s no doubt going to be a lot of pressure on you to perform this year.
It’s no pressure, I’m just going to ride and see what happens like I always do. That’s how easy it is, sometimes it goes good and sometimes it doesn’t.
Finally, still being a young gun, what direction do you think we’ll see snowboarding move in the next 5-10 years? Obviously Torstein’s triple during the summer was off the hook. Where do we go from here?
Man, that’s a question that is hard to answer. Triple corks and triple flips are probably just going to be mellow in like 5 years. But I don't know, and maybe some open jacket no grab double corks should be coming soon.
Thanks for taking the time out to chat to us Halldor. Looking forward to seeing what you pull out this season.
- Interview: Harry Mitchell Thompson
Banging part in Notes. Watch out for the ender...