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"N-Men: The Untold Story" director and Sacramento native James Sweigert talks about film

Sacramento native wins best director at LA Independent Film Festival
Sacramento native wins best director at LA Independent Film Festival 02:26

SACRAMENTO — Hollywood is celebrating a Sacramento native who made a documentary movie about the history of skateboarding in his hometown.

The Los Angeles Independent Film Festival named James Sweigert best director for his documentary called the "N-Men: The Untold Story." It's about the little-known story of how Sacramento helped create modern-day skateboarding and its culture.

It is a Sacramento history lesson that was lost until now.

"The legend thing is they would drain pools, in disguise, skate 'em and then split," Sweigert told CBS13. "It's a story that needs to be told and I got to be the one to tell it!"

Part of Sweigert's own history growing up in Sacramento included him becoming part of an edgy group of skaters who ended up helping change the game of skateboarding.

James Sweigert

"Skateboarding was rebelling against the mainstream, like the N-men," he said. "That's what defined them, and they held it tight."

The "N" in N-men stands in part for Northern California. The film "N-Men: The Untold Story" shows photos of the skaters in the 1970s skating in drained backyard pools before skate parks existed.

"That skateboarding community really was inclusive, and if you wanted to show up and skateboard, you really became a part of that," Sweigert said.

The film's release coincided with the country mourning the death of an N-men disciple, one-time Sacramento skater Tyre Nichols, who was killed by Memphis police now charged with his murder.

"A lot of the N-men and the younger generation N-men posted and reposted about that on social media, and it's very near and dear to our hearts," Sweigert said.

This Sacramento history hitting the big screen is untold no more.

"It's a story about love," Sweigert said. "It's really a love story woven into a skateboarding documentary."

The film is narrated by Josh Brolin. Sacramento will be hosting an N-Fest next Friday with the Sacramento premiere of the movie at the Crest Theatre.

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