‘THE DAMNED: Don’t You Wish That We Were Dead’ is filmmaker Wes Orshoski’s long-awaited documentary of British punk pioneers The Damned. The film will world premiere Wednesday March 18 at The Paramount Theatre in Austin as part of the 2015 South by Southwest Film & Music Festival. The Damned will attend the premiere and perform later that night at an official SXSW showcase at Mohawk.
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Shot around the world over the past four years, the authorized film features appearances by Chrissie Hynde (The Pretenders), Mick Jones (The Clash), Nick Mason (Pink Floyd), Lemmy Kilmister (Motörhead), Duff McKagan (Guns ‘N’ Roses), Ian MacKaye (Minor Threat/Fugazi), Jello Biafra (Dead Kennedys), actor/comedian Fred Armisen, and more. The world premiere is scheduled for 2:15 p.m. on March 18, and will be attended by the current line-up of the Damned, including founding members David Vanian and Captain Sensible.
The Damned were the first U.K. punk band to release a single (1976’s essential New Rose) and album (1977’s iconic ‘Damned Damned Damned’) and they were the first to bring British punk to America, including a stop at New York’s CBGBs.
Weathering near fatal line-changes, The Damned went on to record hits in the new wave era (Love Song & Smash It Up) and registered a massive impact on the 1980s goth scene. The Damned is one of the only surviving band’s from punk’s first wave.
‘THE DAMNED: Don’t You Wish That We Were Dead’ documents the band’s unique history and bitter infighting; it captures the band in the midst of a 35th anniversary tour in 2011 which estranged former members Rat Scabies and Brian James answered with their own anniversary tour. Meanwhile, other former members reunite in the unlikeliest of places—a Welsh cancer ward; elsewhere, members of Black Flag, Circle Jerks, Melvins, T.S.O.L., Buzzcocks, Adverts and the Offspring detail the Damned’s role in setting fire to the dinosaur rock of the 1970s while sparking the punk movement in America.
‘THE DAMNED: Don’t You Wish That We Were Dead’ is longtime journalist/ photographer Wes Orshoski’s follow-up to 2011’s ‘Lemmy,’ the award-winning portrait of Motörhead legend Kilmister (which Orshoski co-directed/produced).
The Damned’s current line-up of Vanian, Sensible, keyboardist Monty Oxymoron, drummer Pinch and bassist Stu West will launch the film by appearing at the world premiere and with a performance at 11 p.m. on Wed. March 18 at Mohawk, on the first night of the SXSW Music Festival.
‘THE DAMNED: Don’t You Wish That We Were Dead screening times and locations at SXSW:
Wednesday, March 18, 2:15 p.m.
(World Premiere to be attended by The Damned)
713 N Congress Ave., Austin
Thursday, March 19, 11 a.m.
719 Congress Ave., Austin
Friday, March 20, 4 p.m.
6226 Middle Fiskville Road, Austin
For more information, visit the official website.