‘Anvil! The Story Of Anvil’ Rock Doc Goes Wide With Theatrical Re-Release From Utopia & Abramorama

·2 min read

EXCLUSIVE: Anvil! The Story Of Anvil, the heartbreaking and heartwarming story of a veteran heavy metal band, is getting a wide theatrical release with its remaster.

The film, which is one of the rock docs that kicked off the genre’s boom ahead of the likes of Amy and Searching for Sugar Man, will be released in 200 theaters across the U.S., timed to its 13th anniversary.

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It’s a rare move for a remastered documentary. The re-release – the film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 2008 – will feature remastered picture and sound, as well as a new exclusive epilogue interview. The re-release comes from Utopia and Abramorama, which released the doc originally, alongside director Sacha Gervasi’s Portobello Electric.

A special one-night engagement in 200 theaters will take place on September 27 with select extended theatrical runs through October at national circuits including AMC and Regal Cinemas. This comes after a special event premiere and performance presented in conjunction with Beyond Fest on September 22 in Los Angeles at the Saban Theatre, with a live concert by the band and a Q&A with Steve “Lips” Kudlow, Robb Reiner, Gervasi and producer Rebecca Yeldham, moderated by Jackass’ Steve-O. It will then be available for digital pre-order on iTunes and Vudu starting September 27.

Anvil, Rebecca Yeldham and Sacha Gervasi, at Sundance - Credit: Getty Images
Anvil, Rebecca Yeldham and Sacha Gervasi, at Sundance - Credit: Getty Images

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The film is about heavy metal and hope. Anvil might have influenced the likes of Metallica and Guns N Roses’ Slash with its influential 1982 record Metal on Metal, and played with the likes of Bon Jovi and Scorpions but they never achieved long term success.

Years later, singer and guitarist Steve “Lips” Kudlow was working for a school catering company and drummer Robb Reiner was working in construction, while still playing the occasional small show.

This looks to have changed when they were invited by a European fan to tour the continent, but it leads to poorly attended shows, travel chaos and inter-band squabbles. The tour ends with a disappointing show at the Monsters of Transylvania festival, before they head back to Canada. They subsequently borrow money to record another album, before getting an offer to play a festival in Japan, that changes everything.

Director Gervasi, who went on to direct Hitchcock starring Anthony Hopkins, Helen Mirren and Scarlett Johansson and My Dinner with Hervé, knew the band well, having been a roadie for them in the early 1980s.

“Sorry, am I on magic mushrooms right now?” said Director Sacha Gervasi. “Is this film really being released into theatres again? Someone please wake me!”

Abramorama’s CEO Richard Abramowitz added, “Exhibitors across the country have been wildly enthusiastic about booking Anvil, to the tune of 200 theaters. I can’t wait to wake Sacha and tell him.”

Watch a new trailer for the re-release below:

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