Centrul Astra Film


Astra Film Festival

Searching for Sugar Man

Malik Bendjelloul,  Finland, Sweden, UK 2012 86'

Oscar, BAFTA - Best Documentary Sundance - Audience Award&Special Jury Prize IDFA - Audience Award&Award for Best Music Documentary
Director's Bio-Filmography:
Based in Stockholm, Malik Bendjelloul has been directing documentaries for twelve years, primarily based on musicians. In 2001, Bendjelloul directed the first ever documentary about German electronic pioneers Kraftwerk. He has also made a documentary series about the history of heavy metal as well as some single documentaries, collaborating with such iconic artists as Björk, Sting, Elton John, Rod Stewart, Madonna, Mariah Carey, U2 and Kylie Minogue. This past fall Bendjelloul directed a filmed concert with Prince. Bendjelloul has also worked as director and creative producer for Swedish Television’s international cultural weekly show Kobra, where he made short documentaries covering a wide range of stories. Among the subjects were the First Earth Battalion – the American army division who tried to teach their soldiers to walk through walls; and a profile on Alfred Merhan, a man who has been living in Charles de Gaulle airport for 18 years and who became the inspiration for Steven Spielberg's THE TERMINAL. Other subjects have included the controversial story of British pop band The KLF burning a million pounds, and a film exploring the rumours surrounding Paul McCartney's death. Bendjelloul has also designed and directed title sequences for several high-profile Swedish TV shows and has directed music videos and commercials.
Director's / Curator's Statement:
„In 2006, after five years making TV documentaries in Sweden, I spent six months travelling around Africa and South America looking for good stories. In Cape Town I met Stephen “Sugar” Segerman, who told me about Rodriguez. I was completely speechless – I hadn’t heard a better story in my life. This was five years ago and I have been working on this film more or less every day since then. I had never heard Rodriguez’s music when Stephen Segerman first told me about him. I fell so totally in love with his story that I was almost afraid to listen to his work – I thought the chances were very slim that the music would be as good as the story, that I'd be disappointed and lose momentum. I started to listen to it when I came back to Europe, and I couldn't believe my ears – literally. I thought my feelings for the story might have influenced my judgment, and I needed to play it to other people to see if they agreed. Their reactions convinced me – these really were songs on a level equal to the best work of Bob Dylan, even the Beatles. I did random vox-pops in the streets of Cape Town – every second person knows of Rodriguez, no matter their age or sex. The hardest thing was to get the right people to believe in the project. I thought it was evident that the story was good – had it been conceived by a screenwriter you would have thought that it was too much, too unbelievable to make sense. Then one day, I decided to see what I could do on my own. And then my luck turned – I got in touch with producers Simon Chinn and John Battsek and showed them what I had worked on. They loved the film. They helped me a great deal and had loads of useful creative ideas. When I asked them who should complete the editing, the animation and the music, they surprised me by saying they thought all those elements were already all there. Suddenly, without me knowing how it happened, the film was complete. It was finally done. “ (Malik Bendjelloul)
World sales:
Monday 17.10.2016 12:30, THALIA
Tuesday 18.10.2016 12:30, THALIA
Wednesday 19.10.2016 12:30, THALIA
Thursday 20.10.2016 12:30, THALIA
Friday 21.10.2016 12:30, THALIA
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