Led Zeppelin Documentary Joins Venice Film Festival Lineup

A whole lotta love is headed to the Venice Film Festival, which has just added the forthcoming Led Zeppelin feature documentary to its lineup.

Bernard MacMahon’s “Becoming Led Zeppelin,” which was recently completed, will screen out of competition. The film was co-written and produced by Allison McGourty, and features band members Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant and the late John Bonham (who died in 1980) as themselves.

The project, which was first announced in 2019, has unprecedented access to the band, marking the first and only time the group has participated in a documentary in 50 years. Though 1976 doc “The Song Remains the Same” centred on the band, that was largely a concert film of a series of Madison Square Garden performances in 1973.

“With Becoming Led Zeppelin my goal was to make a documentary that looks and feels like a musical,” said MacMahon of the film. “I wanted to weave together the four diverse stories of the band members before and after they formed their group with large sections of their story advanced using only music and imagery and to contextualize the music with the locations where it was created and the world events that inspired it. I used only original prints and negatives, with over 70,000 frames of footage manually restored, and devised fantasia sequences, inspired by ‘Singin’ In The Rain,’ layering unseen performance footage with montages of posters, tickets and travel to create a visual sense of the freneticism of their early career.”

First formed in London in 1968, the English rock band is best known for hits including “Stairway to Heaven,” “Whole Lotta Love,” “Good Times Bad Times” and “The Immigrant Song,” and are considered one of the most influential rock bands in history.

More to come.

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