Not only did the late Oscar-winning director Jonathan Demme helm such acclaimed dramas as Silence of the Lambs and Philadelphia, he was also a concert film visionary.
Demme, who died Wednesday at age 73, directed Stop Making Sense, the groundbreaking 1984 Talking Heads concert documentary. The film gained accolades for its imaginative construction and editing, and was the first to be shot entirely using digital audio.
Demme also directed a trilogy of concert film/documentaries featuring Neil Young: 2006’s Heart of Gold, 2009’s Neil Young Trunk Show, and 2012’s Neil Young Journeys.
Demme’s music video work included the video for Springsteen’s “Streets of Philadelphia,” and Bruce’s 1995 clip for “Murder Incorporated.”
In addition, Demme directed 1985’s “Sun City” video for Artists United Against Apartheid, the activist group founded by Little Steven Van Zandt. The project featured Springsteen, Bono, Ringo Starr, Jackson Browne, Keith Richards and many others.
One of Demme’s final projects was a multimedia film for a new Rock and Roll Hall of Fame exhibit called the Power of Rock Experience that’ll premiere at the Hall July 1. Earlier this month, Rock Hall CEO Greg Harris told ABC Radio that the 12-minute film compresses 31 years of footage from Hall induction ceremonies into “an immersive experience based on the emotions of rock ‘n roll.”
In a statement to ABC Radio today, Harris said, “Jonathan had a keen ability to meld his passion for music and storytelling in works that showed us the world in a new light. It was an honor to have worked with him on one of his last projects.”
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