Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Bon Jovi documentary premiere at Tribeca

After months of waiting for news about the various Bon Jovi projects currently in the works, we have official confirmation on the documentary. Like the accompanying book (no release date for that yet as far as I'm aware), it's entitled When We Were Beautiful and will premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival.
Directed by filmmaker and photographer Phil Griffin and produced by Academy Award®-and Emmy-winning producers @radical.media, the documentary was filmed on the road and behind the scenes with the band during their 2008 Lost Highway World Tour, which famously came to a close with a historic concert in New York City’s Central Park and two sold-out nights at Madison Square Garden. At the height of their success—with a number one album and a number one tour—and celebrating huge milestones, Bon Jovi: When We Were Beautiful susses out the secrets behind this legendary band’s determined and charismatic leader Jon Bon Jovi, and band members Richie Sambora, David Bryan, and Tico Torres. The screening will take place on Wednesday, April 29, 2009, at 9:30pm at the Tribeca Performing Arts Center, with two additional screemnings on Thursday, April 30, and Saturday, May 2, 2009; the Festival will run from April 22 through May 3.

For the full press release, click here or visit the Bon Jovi or Island Records websites. I've included some more extracts below along with some smartarse commentary from yours truly.

“Throughout the process of working with Bon Jovi, I was amazed at the candor and humility Jon and his band showed me,” said director Phil Griffin. “The result is not a neatly wrapped up bundle of staged interviews and musical interludes, but rather a series of open and sometimes difficult conversations, explored against a backdrop of music spanning 25 years. It is a film about the peace of Tico, the complexity of Richie, the drive of Jon and the brutal honesty of Dave. It is their willingness to share their stories that gives us what I hope is a very human story—that humanity is what I believe has seen this band stand the test of time.”

The peace of Tico, the complexity of Richie, the drive of Jon, the brutal honesty of Dave, and the non-existence of Hugh?! >_<

Threading intimate band-member interviews with scenes of life on the road, director Phil Griffin’s documentary vividly portrays how the band made it through the rough patches, how they reach consensus on their priorities, and how Jon leads them with strength and compassion. Avid Bon Jovi fans will find plenty of new reasons to be so devoted, but anyone can revel in this exploration of the work that goes into the success and longevity of this band’s magnitude.

Jon: "This is what we're doing."
Everyone else: "Okay."
...Consensus reached. :P

I don't know if that's how decisions are really made in Joviland, and perhaps I'm too cynical, but that was my immediate thought when I read that phrase. I'm not bagging Jon or anything, just stating that he would have a great deal of creative and business control, which I'm sure no one would disagree about.

“Nothing says rock ’n’ roll more than Bon Jovi,” said Tribeca Film Festival co-founder Jane Rosenthal.

I love Bon Jovi more than any other artist but this comment made me laugh out loud. Certainly Bon Jovi has longevity and commercial success behind them but there must be dozens if not hundreds of bands throughout history that are more rock 'n' roll than them!

Looking forward to an eventual DVD release of this though, especially if it's something more than the stock standard PR spin.

Who's going to Tribeca?

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