While we continue to wait (impatiently) for Vanilla Sky to be released on Blu-ray, you can get your HD fix as Netflix is currently streaming the 2001 film in high definition. In a related note, Pearl Jam Twenty is also streaming in HD.
Welcome to another edition of Inquire Within… Through your submissions, Cameron will answer your questions in his own words.
Doug Shiloh (Rockford, IL): Two of your major films Vanilla Sky and Jerry Maguire (which are favorites of mine, by the way) delve into redemption for people who were in the kingdom of greatness, one way or another. How do the new documentaries further your look into this territory (Leon Russell’s return seems to be part of this). What is it about the theme that grabs you?
Cameron: I think many of the great heroes in history, from Winston Churchill to Steve Jobs, were cast out of the kingdom of greatness. Their life-defining work sometimes happens upon their rugged return to power. That theme has always grabbed me. It’s very easy to throw in the towel, but sometimes a simple refusal to give up leads to a whole new life. This theme began for me with Brad Hamilton’s story in Fast Times at Ridgemont High. The fast food king was able to return with a simple twist of fate… the unexpected help of the person he least expected. Spicoli. When we first saw Fast Times on a big screen with a paying audience, it was that moment that caused people to applaud in the audience. I never forgot that.
And it’s even a theme in Pearl Jam Twenty. When many of their contemporaries were giving up, and giving up on the band itself, they kept going… and found the passionate audience that keeps them alive today. Thanks for the question, Doug.
Cameron will be the guest on Pearl Jam Radio this holiday weekend discussing all things Pearl Jam Twenty. You must have Sirus/XM to listen to it live. But fear not, it will show up on iTunes a few days later. Here’s the summary of what to expect.
Inside Pearl Jam Twenty: A Conversation with Cameron Crowe
Fri. 11/25 12pm ET Rebroadcast: Sat. 11/26 9 am ET, Sat 11/26 6 pm ET, Sun 11/27 12 pm ET, Sun 11/27 9 pm ET, Monday 11/28 6 pm ET
Pearl Jam Radio presents an in-depth look at the band’s year-long 20th anniversary celebrations with acclaimed director, filmmaker and longtime friend of the band Cameron Crowe. Hosted by Pearl Jam Radio’s The Rob, this exclusive special features an intimate conversation with Crowe about his new Pearl Jam documentary PJ20, the creation of the film’s accompanying soundtrack, and Crowe’s overall thoughts on the band’s influence and legacy. Plus, hear Pearl Jam music hand-selected by Crowe himself. (1 hr, 10 min)
Cameron and the members of Pearl Jam shared their favorite rock documentaries with Reuters as part of the Pearl Jam Twenty press at the Toronto International Film Festival back in September. Here’s their picks:
Can I do two? Okay, Gimme Shelter and Don’t Look Back. Gimme Shelter, because it’s just amazing, on-the-fly film-making and Don’t Look Back because it just captures the white-hot heat of somebody like Bob Dylan, who’s exploding and there are cameras and microphones everywhere.
The Kids are Alright and Last Waltz. It reminded of the time I got caught smoking pot and got grounded for a week in the summer. And it wasn’t that bad, because all I did was listen to Last Waltz for 18 hours a day.
I saw Jimi plays Berkley and Jimi Hendrix (film). Those two films kind of blew my mind as a teen. And I also remember watching Freddie and his friends, about Freddie Mercury’s home life. It had nothing to do with the band Queen, just how Mercury was as a person. It was mind-blowingly cool.
There was a documentary that came out three or four years ago called American Hardcore. That was sort of the music that I learned to play and to see the footage of some of the Detroit bands and the Boston bands was pretty amazing.
Spinal Tap has got to be in there too. It really is something that affected me hugely.
I would say one life changing film was Woodstock. My first concept of a rock singer ever was probably Roger Daltrey at Woodstock doing his thing. And Hendrix, of course his version of The Star Spangled Banner was the one that went into my soul and I grabbed it, grabbed it and I ran with it.
Please chime in! What are your favorite rock documentaries?
Now that most of you have seen Pearl Jam Twenty, I thought it was a good time to share the Toronto International Film Festival press conference with you. This footage is courtesy of Now magazine. My videos didn’t turn out nearly this good. It’s presented in four parts and does contain spoilers from the film. I’ve also transcribed the press conference, if you’d like to read it, you can here.
Chris Perkel sat down for a lengthy chat with The AWL to discuss the editing of Pearl Jam Twenty. As you know Chris, along with editor Kevin Klauber and assistant editor Adi Cabigting were integral in editing down the massive amount of footage that was available. It’s an interesting and candid interview, so do check it out!
Pearl Jam Twenty is now available for your viewing (or repeated viewing pleasure). To celebrate, there’s a couple of performance clips (from The Kids Are Twenty) out today too. “Last Exit” (above, courtesy of The Wall Street Journal) and “Not For You”, (exclusively over at IMDB.com). In North America, you can pick it up Pearl Jam Twenty and The Kids Are Twenty in the following ways: