One of the greatest fishing stories there is, told by the man who's lived it, has been captured and released as an award-winning film, "Mighty Waters."
Cold Collaborative's Mighty Waters, a film that focuses on fishing guide Ansil Saunders, has been publicly released after spending time on the festival circuit, and it's perhaps the best, most artistic coming together of saltwater angling and civil rights there's ever been.
Co-sponsored by Simms, Costa, and the American Museum of Fly Fishing, the film highlights Saunders and his relationship with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The two spent time together fishing in Bimini, the sport fishing capital of the world, and Saunders' message of hope, peace and humanity wound up being a real inspiration to Dr. King, Jr. That sounds impressively significant, but after watching the film, you'll realize he's an inspiration to anyone.
The 88-year-old made his name as a world record-owning bonefish guide and boat builder, but he is leaving his legacy in even bigger, more profound ways.
The must-see documentary film was released on YouTube on the first day of Black History Month, as well as SimmsFishing.com. Here it is in its entirety.
The film has already earned the Social Awareness Award at the Wasatch Mountain Film Festival and the Platinum Award at the WorldFest-Houston International Film Festival.
"When I first heard Ansil's story, I knew it was a story the world should hear. Really, it's everything about him. From the way he speaks to others and how he guides his clients on the flats, to his passionate pursuit for social justice. Everything about how he lives his day-to-day life is just so authentically good," said filmmaker Shannon Vandivier. "Ansil chose a path in life where wealth isn't measured in dollars and cents, but rather how he spends his time. He has chosen to spend his currency of time by helping and inspiring as many people as he can -- Martin Luther King Jr. included. I know for me personally, the Mighty Waters project, and specifically Ansil, have completely changed how I define wealth and what it actually means to be wealthy."
The details of the story are so moving, and it's incredible to watch the way the filmmakers and production team helped weave the fibers throughout the short film. The humble fly fishing guide is, in fact, an "influencer" in the truest sense of the word, and was one well before the modern definition took shape.
"As a fishing brand, we don't always get to tell stories that resonate with anglers and non-anglers alike. Mighty Waters is an inspiring exception," says Simms CMO, Strick Walker. "Ansil Saunders is a hero. His story is compelling and unifying, whether or not you fish."
Saunders was inducted into the Fly Fishing Hall of Fame last year, and even this late in life, continues his efforts to "level the playing field" for folks in Bimini and beyond.
For more on the film and Saunders, check out the info shared by Simms on their website.
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