The documentary Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January, will screen in New York and Los Angeles in August. Watch the just-released trailer here.
The film about the late jazz innovator, directed by Stanley Nelson, is released via Abramorama and Eagle Rock Entertainment. It will open at Film Forum in New York City on 23 August and at the Landmark in LA on 30 August. Openings in other US cities will begin in September.
Birth Of The Cool has also been screened in the first half of 2019 at other US film festivals including Miami, Cleveland, Atlanta and Seattle, and internationally in Lisbon, Krakow, Sydney and Munich. The IMDb website lists a further opening for the picture in Holland on 12 September.
The trailer previews the film’s depiction of Davis’ career progression from his bebop years to the establishing of his groundbreaking 1960s quintet and subsequent electric work. Actor Carl Lumby narrates, from Davis’ autobiography of 1989, and there are new interviews with collaborators Herbie Hancock, Quincy Jones and Ron Carter and such admirers as Carlos Santana, as well as the trumpeter’s first wife Frances Taylor Davis.
Says director Nelson in a statement: “The story of Miles Davis has often been told as the story of a drug-addled genius. You rarely see a portrait of a man that worked hard at honing his craft, a man who deeply studied and understood classical music. An elegant man who could render ballads with such tenderness, yet hold rage in his heart from the racism he faced throughout his life.
“He could be extremely generous, yet rescind that generosity on a whim. He could be shamelessly romantic with the women in his life, then unspeakably cruel. Miles was a man apart — in life, in love, in music — and there has never been a major documentary about this man who never looked back, rarely apologised, and changed everything we thought we knew about jazz, about music — several times in his career.
“Miles was ever-evolving,” concludes Nelson, “and it was up to the rest of the world to catch up. In unpacking the mythology that surrounds him — using his own words — I think we’ll be presenting the definitive, nuanced account of Miles Davis, the man behind the legend.”
Explore our Miles Davis Artist Page.