Charles Bukowski’s writing influenced many a writer, poet and musician, and now the acerbic bard of San Pedro will be appearing like he’s never been seen before.
You Never Had It – An Evening with Bukowski, premiering August 7th in virtual cinemas, features archival footage of Italian producer and journalist Silvia Bizio interviewing Bukowski at his home during an evening in January 1981. They’re joined by others — including Bukowski’s soon-to-be wife Linda Lee Beighle — as they smoke cigarettes, drink wine and have probing conversations surrounding sex, literature, childhood and the nature of humanity.
The footage, shot on U-matic videotapes and long thought lost, was rediscovered by Bizio in her garage more than 20 years after Bukowski’s death in 1994. In addition to the archival film, You Never Had It also includes newly shot Super 8 footage of downtown Los Angeles, set to poems read out loud by Bukowski, as well as interviews with a present-day Bizio about her experience with the writer. The film’s title takes its inspiration from the final line in Bukowski’s poem “Those Sons of Bitches,” from the 1972 collection Mockingbird Wish Me Luck.
An official selection of the Venice Film Festival, You Never Had It will open via online screenings through New York’s New Plaza Cinema and Los Angeles’ Laemmle Theatres.