Surfer and Social and Community Entrepreneur, Producer,
The Bra Boys
Abberton in LA for the Bra Boys premier
Sunny Abberton (Director, Writer, Producer) is a 34-year-old
first-time writer, director and producer.
was born in Sydney, Australia, as the oldest of four
brothers, and spent his formative years between Maroubras
housing estates, New Zealand and a hippy commune in
Nimbin. Sunny, and brothers Jai and Koby, were taught
to surf by their grandfather and would find the beach
their only escape from a troubled and destitute home
showed talent as a young surfer and left school at
age 15 to pursue a career in the sport. Sunny competed
on the competitive ASP Pro Tour in the late 1980s
and early 1990s, in which he gained a reputation as
one of the best junior surfers in the world. Fortuitously,
this early career path took him to countries such
as Brazil and South Africa where he was introduced
to class injustices and economic oppression for the
first time on a global scale.
he was in Brazil, he discovered a childrens
reading book written to teach the poorest Brazilian
children about the Landless Movement, which was a
turning point for Sunny. Through this piece of literature,
he first gained an insight into the power of the arts
to have the potential to enlighten and inform - particularly
the young and the oppressed. Sensing parallels between
the injustices experienced by the lower echelons of
these societies, and the poverty he had witnessed
in the housing commission estates of his native Maroubra,
Sunny set out to create a voice which could inspire
the youth of his own backyard. Thus the idea for BRA
BOYS was born.
back in Maroubra, an escalation in tensions among
various Sydney communities was beginning to manifest
in violence on Sydneys eastern beaches. Gangs
would regularly travel to the beaches and it sparked
a series of bloody confrontations. The youth at Maroubra
banded together to defend their beach and create a
brotherhood to protect one another. Sunny was part
of the resistance and, together with a small group
of mates, formed a group they termed the Bra Boys.
his days on the Pro Surf tours, Sunny had a wealth
of experience in front of the camera, and he used
this exposure to learn the tricks of the trade, through
a mixture of osmosis and curiosity. Years of filming
surf travelogues on home video cameras also helped
to equip him for his first feature documentary shoot.
was about six months into the filming of the documentary
that his brother Jai was charged with murdering a
Sydney standover man, a blow later amplified when
his brother Koby was charged as an accessory after
the fact. Together with a local production company
Sunny spent an additional three years filming the
central figures within the Bra Boys community, including
the legal struggle of his two brothers.
collected hundreds of hours of film out of which the
Bra Boys documentary was compiled. Sunny was the writer,
producer and director of the film.
the informally appointed patriarch of both the Abberton
family and then the larger group known as the Bra
Boys, Sunny had always felt a deep responsibility
for both the internal and external perception of the
group. Through this documentary, Sunny hopes to give
inspiration and a voice to the youth of Maroubra,
and others in Australia who have grown up in similar
circumstances, as well as provide an arena to share
their experiences in a public forum.
currently lives at Maroubra Beach in Sydney, Australia.
BRA BOYS is his first feature film and he currently
has another two projects in development, one of which
is a feature adaptation of the BRA BOYS documentary.
(Credit: Bra Boys
Abberton accepts the ‘The Surf Movie of the
Year Award’ on behalf of the Bra Boys at the
23rd annual Australian Surfing Awards
News search for Sunny Abberton
Man publicly commends Sunny on his fantastic social
and community endeavors
Man does not represent Sunny Abberton