Monday, February 12, 2007

Director's Label To End With One More Disc Of Gondry Goodness

A couple of weeks ago, after being privileged enough to see a very early screening of Son of Rambow, I was lucky to be able to share a few words with Garth Jennings, the film's director. As one half of Hammer and Tongs he has been responsible for many of the best music videos of the last ten years, and their work was slated to be the subject of the next Directors Label DVD.

Jennings didn't seem to think it was going to happen. He admitted that he didn't know, but did indicate that things had gone very quiet.

Now it's clearer. The second wave of discs - Mark Romanek, Jonathan Glazer, Stephane Sednaoui and Anton Corbijn - did not acheive anything like the sales of wave one - Michel Gondry, Spike Jonze and Chris Cunningham. Sadly, this has pretty much rang the death knell for the whole project.

As well as Hammer and Tongs, Shynola were due a disc too, alongside Jean Baptiste-Mondino. Instead, it looks like there is going to be only one more title, a second volume of Gondry's work. Without a doubt, Gondry was the biggest draw in the whole series so far - though I do love my Romanek collection in particular. Despite featuring most of his most famous promos, Gondry's first disc barely scratched the surface of his full ouevre so rest assured that there's plenty more good stuff to fill out another installment.

It's good news that there's more Michel to come, but I only hope collections from Hammer and Tongs and Shynola can find their way out through some other means. Any entrepeneurs out there willing to take a punt?

A brief footnote. Visitors to the official Hammer and Tongs website may have noticed the text (working title) popping up everytime the words Son of Rambow are used. I feared that there may be a problem - either with the use of the Rambo copyright, or with the film's distributor Paramount Vantage finding this title unusable in marketing terms - so I e-mailed Hammer and Tongs to find out what is going on. Here's Garth's reply:

It is still a working title because we might add a sub-title. We're not sure yet. Nothing sinister though."

The film does have a subtitle on imdb, where it is referred to as Son of Rambow: A Home Movie. I prefer the shorter version, for sure.

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