Rolling Stones Announce Career-Spanning Documentary

Film will include unseen footage from the band's archives

Mick Jagger and Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones on tour in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1981.
Michael Halsband /Landov
March 15, 2012 8:30 AM ET

The Rolling Stones have announced plans to release a new documentary that will cover every phase of their career from their start in 1962 up to their 50th anniversary celebration this year. The band has tapped The Kid Stays in the Picture director Brett Morgen for the project, which as of yet has no official title. The Rolling Stones are the executive producers of the film, which is scheduled to debut at the band's 50th anniversary celebrations in September.

"For anyone who wants to experience the band, this is the film that will defy convention and create a sonic tapestry to transport viewers into the world of the Rolling Stones,” Morgen said in a statement. "The film will deliver the original, bold, sexy and dangerous flavor of the iconic rock band."

In addition to being the first film to tell the story of the band's full career, the documentary will feature a great deal of uncensored, never-before-seen footage from the band's vaults and personal archives.

"Nobody has put the story together as a narrative," Morgen told Rolling Stone. "We've been looking under every rock going through their archives. It will be music never heard before, and I've conducted 50-plus hours of interviews so far. By the time we're done, they will be the most extensive group interviews they've ever done.

"I’m not a historian or a journalist, so I’m interested in mythology and film-making and creating something that feels really cinematic," says Morgen. "The way I sort of see this film is it’s like bottling up the essence of the Rolling Stones in a film."

"I think they all have such unique points of view," Morgen says of the band. "We’re not doing a Roshomon thing where they’re contradicting each other. It’s just that Bill Wyman was as different from Keith Richards or Mick Jagger as you can get. You know, Charlie Watts is his own character with a very different type of approach to rock and roll than the other guys, so I think countering that sort of individuality is hopefully going to make the film quite endearing to the audience."

"He told me 80 percent of the footage has never been seen before, which amazes me," Keith Richards told Rolling Stone. "I didn't know there was that much around."

Additional reporting by Patrick Doyle.

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