Surfers embark on Odyssey to help promote documentary film on autism

Two big wave surfers planned to paddle their surfboards and pedal their bicycles across the islands to promote a documentary film on autism.

Laird Hamilton and Dave Kalama are embarking on the land and sea fundraising Odyssey to help their friend, cinematographer Don King, who made "Beautiful Son" about his autistic 6-year-old son Beau.

King, who works on the popular ABC series "Lost," said he hopes the effort by Hamilton and Kalama will raise $40,000 (Ђ31,500) to distribute the documentary to a wider audience.

International pro surfer Hamilton and his longtime tow-in surfing partner Kalama hope to finish on Kauai on Monday after setting off Wednesday on the Big Island. They are pedaling across land and then standup surfing, using extra-long paddles, between the islands.

The hardest part of the journey will be paddling from Oahu to Kauai on Sunday and Monday, King said.

King has filmed Hamilton for commercials and a film that won for best documentary short at the 2005 Maui Film Festival.

"Beautiful Son" was directed by King's wife, Julianne Yamamoto King.

The couple hopes the film will raise public awareness, as well as funds for research to help find a cure for the disease, reports AP.

Autism is a brain disorder that begins in early childhood and affects three crucial areas of development communication, social interaction and creative or imaginative play.

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