Thursday, 18 September 2014

Doc'n Roll festival reveals full line-up

Julien Temple
Doc’n Roll, a festival dedicated exclusively to music documentaries, has announced its full line up of 12 films, many followed by Q&As, taking place at between 25-28 September at the Hackney Picturehouse in east London.

Located across the road from the cinema is the Stage 3 bar, which will act as the festival hub, where audiences can take in live sets from Ming City Rockers and The ‘45s as well as DJ sets from Primal Scream’s Simone Marie Butler and photographer and filmmaker Dean Chalkley.

“I am very excited to present our festival and this line-up to London,” says Doc’n Roll director Colm Forde. “It features many overlooked music documentary gems, which I can’t wait to support and share with our audience. We will expand the experience beyond the screenings and create a great social event at our festival hub.”

A Band Called Death
On Thursday 25 Doc’n Roll opens with the London premiere of A Band Called Death, which tells the little known story of the world’s first black punk band, Death, formed by three brothers from Detroit in 1974. Then the African-American community was grooving to Earth, Wind & Fire, and there was no room for a black, garage band turning out loud, aggressive rock ‘n’ roll – a sound that has since been described by the New York Times as, “punk before punk was punk’ and by Jack White as “ahead of punk, and ahead of their time”. A Q&A will follow the screening of A Band Called Death with band members, Bobby and Dannis Hackney.

The line-up features an exclusive Julien Temple retrospective on Saturday 27 September. This will comprise screenings of Joe Strummer: The Future is Unwritten, London: The Modern Babylon and, following the screening of Oil City Confidential, an on-stage conversation with Julien Temple and Zoe Howe, author and Dr Feelgood expert. Temple will also show a sneak preview, via an exclusive clip, of his upcoming documentary about Dr Feelgood’s Wilko Johnson.

On Sunday 28 Doc’n Roll closes with Howard S Bergman and Susan Stahman’s A Life in the Death of Joe Meek which, offers an insight into the life of Britain’s first independent pop record producer. The film features contributions from a cast of musicians including Jimmy Page, Alex Kapranos, Edwyn Collins and Mike Berry. The screening will be followed by a Q&A with director Howard Berger, and Mike Berry, whose first hit “A Tribute to Buddy Holly’ was produced by Meek in 1961. It will chaired by author and Meek enthusiast Travis Elborough.

Saturday sees British filmmaker Karen Whitehead screen the UK premiere of Her Aim Is True, which tells the story of photographer Jini Dellaccio, who recently passed away aged 97. Dellaccio first found herself taking pictures of rock and pop stars in the 1960s, when she was in her 40s, and is now described as the photographer who visualised punk before it had a name and embodied indie before it was cool. Whitehead, who interviewed Dellaccio for her film, will be at the screening for a Q&A session.

Jini Dellaccio
American Punk rock pioneer Grant Hart is the subject of Gorman Bechard’s Every Everything: the music, life & times of Grant Hart, an unrestrained look in to the former Hüsker Dü co-songwriter/singer/drummer’s world including his rocky family life, the formation and consequent break-up of his most well-known band and the musical projects that followed.

The Doc‘n Roll line-up also includes Sophie Huber’s Harry Dean Stanton: Partly Fiction, an impressionistic portrait of the iconic actor that explores his enigmatic outlook on his life, his unexploited talents as a musician, and includes candid scenes with David Lynch, Wim Wenders, Sam Shepard, Kris Kristofferson and Debbie Harry.

William Hechter’s AKA Doc Pomus tells the story of Brooklyn-born Jerome Felder (1925-1991), who was paralysed with polio as a child. As a teenager he began performing as a blues singer under the stage name Doc Pomus and by the 1950s he had become one of the most successful songwriters of the early rock and roll era. He penned “Save the Last Dance for Me,” “This Magic Moment,” “A Teenager in Love,” “Viva Las Vegas” and dozens of other hits. The film features interviews with Doc’s collaborators and friends including Dr. John, Ben E. King, Joan Osborne, Shawn Colvin, Dion, Leiber and Stoller, and BBC King. Passages from Hechter’s private journals read by his close friend, the late Lou Reed.

AKA Doc Pomus
Jeff Broadway’s Our Vinyl Weighs A Ton features interviews and footage from the hip-hop and avante-garde record label, Stones Throw Records, home to innovative leftfield producers like Madlib and J Dilla. The film features interviews with Kanye West, Snoop Dogg, Common, Questlove, Talib Kweli and Mike D of The Beastie Boys.

Danny Garcia’s Looking for Johnny is a new documentary on the life of the late New York Dolls and Heartbreakers guitarist Johnny Thunders. Garcia spoke to the 50 people who were closes to the rocker about his music, which inspired punk and glam-metal, as well as his hard lifestyle. The film explores Thunder’s battle with drugs and theories on his death in a New Orleans hotel in 1991 at age 38. There will also be a screening of The Punk Syndrome about the Finnish punk band, Pertti Kurikka’s Name Day.

Tickets will be on sale via Hackney Picturehouse

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Film London invests in youth engagement and film educator training
Film London is investing in the next generation of cinema goers through two new initiatives: a youth engagement scheme led by Film Hub London, and a training course for film educators funded by Creative Skillset.

Film Hub London has awarded £50,000 to a consortium of organisations, led by Picturehouse Cinemas, to deliver Cinemania, a collaborative programme aiming to increase the engagement of young audiences with a wide variety of film across the capital. Film Hub London, led by Film London, is a partner of the BFI Film Audience Network (BFI FAN), a four-year initiative working to grow audiences for cultural film across the UK. 

Activity is planned in 11 London boroughs and comprises of the following 12 cinemas:
  • ArtHouse Crouch End
  • Barbican
  • Cineworld Feltham
  • Clapham Picturehouse
  • Greenwich Picturehouse
  • Hackney Picturehouse
  • Lexi Cinema
  • Phoenix Cinema
  • Stratford Picturehouse
  • The Gate Cinema
  • Rio Cinema
  • The ICA
The consortium will also partner with film education charity Into Film plus organisations including London International Animation Festival. The 8-10 month project will implement a mix of programming and training to engage young people between the ages of 12 and 24 with a particular focus on targeting marginalised groups who do not regularly visit the cinema.

The scheme was developed as a response to the challenges exhibitors face in engaging young people with the capital’s diverse offering of cinema, a key issue highlighted by consultation with the exhibition sector during Film London’s development of Film Hub London.

Clare Binns, director of programming & acquisitions at Picturehouse Cinemas said “Picturehouse cinemas always strive to bring an exciting, challenging and varied programme of films to our audiences and put local communities at the heart of what we do. Engaging young audiences and giving them the opportunity to develop their cinematic experiences is a crucial part of this.”

Cultivate: Inspiring Future Audiences, led by Film London with funding from Creative Skillset, is the third edition of the UK’s only training course dedicated to developing the skills of film education professionals working in exhibition. Applications are now open with a deadline of 31 October 2014.

The London-based course, facilitated by film education consultant Corinna Downing, will run from 14- 16 January 2015 and will focus on developing the skills of film exhibitors at all stages of their career. Participants will benefit from the expertise of industry practitioners, who will present case studies, run practical sessions and give bespoke guidance tailored to reflect the attendees’ needs.

Bursaries to help cover some of the course fees, travel and accommodation will be available to participants thanks to support from the BFI Film Audience Network.

Rebecca Davies, film partnership manager at Creative Skillset, said The introduction of Cultivate succeeded in filling a gap in training provision for film exhibitors who wanted to reach out to young people and make a real difference to their film education provision for our audiences of the future.  This is our third year of support and we have seen a fantastic array of inspired projects and collaborations spring up across venues as a result of this programme.”

Film Hub London, managed by Film London, is a four-year project investing £800,000 lottery funding as part of the BFI Film Audience Network. Expanding film culture in London with a particular focus on underserved audiences in the outer boroughs, Film Hub London has a collaborative membership of over 150 commercial and independent cinemas, film clubs, pop-up venues and community groups.

Adrian Wootton, chief executive of Film London and the British Film Commissio, added : “With these initiatives, Film London and Film Hub London’s ambition is to lay the groundwork for a new generation of engaged, inquisitive and enlightened film audiences. This activity is an integral part of our ongoing commitment to nurturing a thriving film culture in the capital, as young people are vital to an effective and sustainable audience development strategy.”

George Clooney to receive Cecil B DeMille Award at Golden Globes

George Clooney
George Clooney is to receive an honorary award at next year’s Golden Globes, which will be presented in Hollywood on 11 January 2015. The Golden Globes are organised by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), which says it is celebrating Clooney’s outstanding contributions both “in front of and behind the camera”.

The 53-year-old actor, producer and director has won four Golden Globes during his career and now Clooney will be presented with the 2015 Cecil B. DeMille Award.

The Cecil B DeMille Award is given annually to those who have made an impact on the world of entertainment. Recent recipients include Woody Allen (2014), Jodie Foster (2013), Morgan Freeman, (2012), Robert De Niro (2011), Martin Scorsese (2010), Steven Spielberg (2009), Warren Beatty (2007), Anthony Hopkins (2006), Robin Williams (2005), Michael Douglas (2004), Gene Hackman (2003), Harrison Ford (2002), Al Pacino (2001), and Barbra Streisand (2000).

Last year Clooney appeared in Gravity and, through his Smokehouse production company, he recently produced, directed and starred in The Monuments Men. He will soon be seen starring in the upcoming sci-fi film Tomorrowland for Disney.

Clooney’s achievements as a performer and a filmmaker have earned him four Golden Globes, two Academy Awards, four SAG Awards, one BAFTA award, two Critics’ Choice Awards, an Emmy and four National Board of Review Awards.

He is also being recognised as for his global humanitarian efforts as well as accomplishments in the entertainment industry. In 2006, Clooney and his father, Nick, went to drought-stricken Darfur, Africa, to film the documentary Journey to Darfur. The following year Clooney, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon, Don Cheadle and Jerry Weintraub founded Not On Our Watch, an organization whose mission is to focus global attention and resources to stop and prevent mass atrocities in Darfur. 

Clooney’s humanitarian efforts in Darfur saw him presented was the 2007 Peace Summit Award at the eighth World Summit of Nobel Peace Prize Laureates. In 2008, Clooney was designated a UN Messenger of Peace, one of eight individuals chosen to advocate its peacekeeping efforts. Two years later, Clooney, along with Joel Gallen and Tenth Planet Productions, produced the Hope for Haiti Now! telethon, raising more than $66 million.

The Academy of Television Arts and Sciences awarded Clooney with the Bob Hope Humanitarian Award and later that year, Clooney received the Robert F Kennedy Ripple of Hope Award for his dedication to humanitarian efforts in Sudan and Haiti.