The award-winning author and photographer has traveled to more than 50 countries to capture stories, photos and TV for Outside, Sunset, Smithsonian Air & Space, NBC, CBS, BBC, MTV, Discovery Channel, Disney/Hyperion, and many other top magazines, television networks and publishers.
Friel is also a trained amphibious ultralight pilot, marine naturalist, bodhran player and bartender, but reports that only one of those skills regularly comes in handy. He spent 9 years as editor of Caribbean Travel & Life magazine, but somehow could never maintain a decent tan, so he traded in his flip flops for flannel and moved to a tiny, rural island in the Pacific Northwest—the eighth island this Philly boy has lived on around the world.
It was in the middle of this beautiful, misty nowhere that a high-flying teenage runaway landed a stolen plane and entered outlaw history, becoming the subject of Friel’s acclaimed nonfiction book: The Barefoot Bandit: The True Tale of Colton Harris-Moore, New American Outlaw.
Friel’s book has been adapted for the screen by Academy Award-winning writer Lance Black (Milk) as an upcoming feature film by Academy Award-winning director Robert Zemeckis (Forest Gump, Castaway, Flight, Back to the Future, etc).
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