EXCLUSIVE: While the film world eagerly awaits the release of Andrew Dominik’s Marilyn Monroe biopic Blonde, scored by Nick Cave and Warren Ellis, we can reveal details about the latest collaboration between the filmmaker and musicians: documentary This Much I Know To Be True.
Oz filmmaker Dominik previously teamed up with Cave and Ellis to powerful effect on the stunning western The Assassination Of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford. They followed that up with 2016 music documentary One More Time With Feeling, which premiered at the Venice Film Festival.
This Much I Know To Be True is a companion piece to the latter film, exploring the creative relationship and songs from Cave and Ellis’s last two studio albums, Ghosteen (Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds) and Carnage (Nick Cave & Warren Ellis). Above is a first look image from the film.
Shot on location in London and Brighton last year, the movie will document the duo’s first performances of the albums and will feature a special appearance by close friend and long-term collaborator, Marianne Faithfull. Cinematography comes from Oscar-nominated DoP Robbie Ryan (The Favourite).
Interstitial pieces between the songs will “illuminate the cosmology and themes of the music”. Viewers will hear about the process of Cave writing The Red Hand Files—the letters he chooses to answer and the replies themselves — and his method. The film will also visit the workshop where Cave is creating a series of sculptures depicting the life of the Devil. The series is described as “a portrait of the lives of all of us as we move from innocence to experience, attune to the world and its attendant loss, and eventually confront our own mortality”.
The release is being lined up for later in 2022, when Cave and Ellis will also tour the U.S. for the first time.
The movie is a Bad Seed Ltd Film produced by Uncommon Creative Studios. Producers are Amy James and Isaac Hoff. Executive producers are Charlie Gatsky Sinclair, Brian Message and Beth Clayton. Editor is Matthew C. Hart and lighting design comes from Chris Scott.
The relationship between long-time collaborators Cave and Ellis was also captured in 2014 doc 20,000 Days On Earth.
Acclaimed Australian singer-songwriter Cave is well known for his baritone voice and for fronting rock band Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds, of which violinist and multi-instrumentalist Ellis is a key member. Cave is also known for scripting movies including The Proposition and Lawless, and for collaborating with Ellis on the score for movies including Oscar-nominated Hell Or High Water, and the aforementioned Lawless.