Photo by Paul Morigi
E. Chai Vasarhelyi, Alex Honnold, Jimmy Chin
E. Chai Vasarhelyi, Alex Honnold, Jimmy Chin

For those of you who wonder why RBG’s documentary didn’t win the Academy Award for Best Documentary, you probably didn’t see Free Solo that won.  Here is a look back at Hollywood on the Potomac’s interview with the filmmakers and stars of Free Solo, from October of 2018.

By all accounts, according to National Geographic’s documentary Free Solo, Alex Honnold was a melancholy child, shy and with expectations toward perfection. Since the future is often formulated in childhood, we asked him about that at a private screening in Washington, DC. 

Was he striving for perfection because it was expected of him?  “I don’t think that, I mean I’m sure it all contributes,” he told Hollywood on the Potomac. “I don’t think it’s easy to put your finger on one thing like that because I think there’s a lot of things that the film maybe doesn’t go into as much which is just general climbing, culture and history. The fact that I grew up looking up to some of the people like Peter Crops, the fellow you see in the film who’s like a hero, is in my childhood. I think there was a lot of just history of free solo climbing that sort of drew me to it as well. It’s not just the whole psychological side with family and whatever – part of it is just that it’s fun. I just like it. It’s just cool. But the thing is that everybody … plenty of people just have drive in their life for whatever reason – wants to do well in something. It doesn’t need to be some dark childhood, it could also just be that you want to be good at what you do.”