Penelope Spheeris‘s unreleased Ozzfest documentary “We Sold Our Souls For Rock ‘N’ Roll” will be screened at the David Geffen Theater in Los Angeles, California on Friday, August 18 at 7:30 p.m. PT.
The 90-minute film, which was shot in the late 1990s, includes interviews and live footage with SLIPKNOT, STATIC-X and SYSTEM OF A DOWN, along with plenty of backstage action. The is also a lot of focus on BLACK SABBATH as Ozzfest 1999 was billed as the band’s final-ever performance in the United States.
Tickets for the screening are available for purchase at AcademyMuseum.org.
“We Sold Our Souls For Rock ‘N’ Roll” was screened at a number of film festivals more than 20 years ago but has never seen wide release after being held up in what has been reported as “music copyright issues.”
Back in 2008, Sharon Osbourne commented on the status of “We Sold Our Souls For Rock ‘N’ Roll” in response to an article that was posted on Todd Martens‘ “Extended Play” blog on the Los Angeles Times web site. At the time, she wrote in an e-mail: “We would love for ‘We Sold Our Souls for Rock ‘n’ Roll’ to eventually be released. We didn’t invest over a million dollars in the movie to keep it locked away. In reality, we were unable to secure the necessary music licensing and talent releases from all of the bands that participated in the documentary. We needed a substantial amount of money to secure these releases so as a business proposition it just didn’t make sense to pour even more money into the project. We all tried to find an independent backer to come in, but were unable to find anyone.
“As far as not allowing Penelope Spheeris to show the documentary at film festivals, please see below the list of festivals where I know that the film was shown (and there may have been more).
* Sundance Film Festival (2001)
* SXSW Film Festival (2001)
* Melbourne International Film Festival (2001)
* Sydney Film Festival (2001)
* Singapore International Film Festival (2001)
* Silver Lake Film Festival (2001)
* Chicago Underground Film Festival (2001)
* San Francisco Independent Film Festival (2002)
* Boston Underground Film Festival (2002)
“I also arranged for two industry screenings in Los Angeles and London that I totally financed at great expense in an attempt to find a distributor for the film.
“Tell me, what sense does it make for us to invest one million dollars in a film to let it sit? I truly wish that Penelope had found us an independent backer so we could have finished the project. Let her find us a backer to complete the project and we’ll do it.”
When it was first screened in 2001, “We Sold Our Souls For Rock ‘N’ Roll” won “Most Popular Documentary” at the Melbourne International Film Festival.