Thursday, December 4, 2008

Sundance Film Festival to include Jimmy Page guitar documentary's U.S. premiere

The guitar documentary "It Might Get Loud," starring Jimmy Page, The Edge and Jack White, is set to make its U.S. premiere at the Sundance Film Festival next month.

Directed by Davis Guggenheim and produced by Thomas Tull and others, the film makes its second festival appearance following its world premiere at the Toronto Film Festival in September. It is destined for wider distribution next summer, having recently been purchased by Sony Pictures Classics.

"It Might Get Loud" successfully unites Page, White and Edge for the first time, as the film's official Web site explains:
"While each guitarist describes his own musical rebellion, a rock 'n' roll summit is being arranged. Set on an empty soundstage, the musicians come together, crank up the amps and play. They also share their influences, swap stories, and teach each other songs. During the summit Page's double-neck guitar, The Edge's array of effects pedals and White's new mic, custom built into his guitar, go live."
Sony describes "It Might Get Loud" as "a musically and visually uplifting love letter to the electric guitar told through the experiences of these three major figures across three generations of rock 'n' roll."

Back to the official Web site:
"The musical journey is joined by visual grandeur too. We see the stone halls of Headley Grange where "Stairway to Heaven" was composed, visit a haunting Tennessee farmhouse where Jack White writes a song on-camera, and eavesdrop inside the dimly lit Dublin studio where The Edge lays down initial guitar tracks for U2's forthcoming single. The images, like the stories, will linger in the mind long after the reverb fades.

"'It Might Get Loud' might not affect how you play guitar, but it will change how you listen.
What's particularly notable about this film for Jimmy Page enthusiasts is the fact that it contains new music from him, created on screen. He had gone all decade, from 2000 on, without releasing any original material -- a point he addressed in an interview with David Cavanagh for Uncut magazine earlier this year: "That doesn't matter!" said the guitarist. "No! What does that matter?"

The Sundance announcement arrived Dec. 4 by way of a press release pertaining to films that to be screened at the festival that are not taking part in the competition.

Despite its seemingly Led Zeppelin-related title, another film slated to run at Sundance has nothing to do with Led Zeppelin. There's a film called "Over the Hills and Far Away," directed by Michael Orion Scott, that "chronicles the journey of the Isaacson family as they travel through Mongolia in search of a mysterious shaman they believe can heal their autistic son." Again, it has nothing to do with Led Zeppelin; I'm sorry I mentioned it.

The festival runs Jan. 15-25 in Utah. Ticketing information is available here, and other information about the festival is available here.

Update: It Might Get Loud is now scheduled for five screenings at Sundance. The first and second are on Jan. 16, at 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. The other screenings are on Jan. 17, 18 and 24.

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