NEW YORK – September 1, 2022 – IFC today announced “Documentary Now…and Forever!,” a week-long cinematic celebration pairing classic documentaries and the landmark series. The in-person, retrospective screening series will play at The IFC Center located in New York, NY from Wednesday, September 14 through Tuesday, September 20. For fans who cannot make it to the in-person screenings, a curated selection of documentaries will also be available on AMC+, AMC Networks’ premium streaming destination, beginning the same day.
Known for lovingly paying homage to the world of documentaries, Documentary Now! Season 53 will debut with a two-episode premiere on Wednesday, October 19 at 10 PM on IFC, and on AMC+ the same day. New episodes will debut weekly on Wednesdays. Starting today, September 1, AMC+ will be the exclusive home of previous seasons of Documentary Now!.
“As devoted documentary lovers, everyone at IFC Center has been a fan of Documentary Now! since the series began. It’s a thrill to be able to bring some of the series lovingly crafted, tone-perfect episodes to the big screen, alongside the original films that inspired them,” said John Vanco, Senior Vice President and GM of IFC Center. “We’re especially honored to be hosting the first public screenings ever of the new season’s premiere, ‘Soldier of Illusion,’ which pays tribute to intrepid nonfiction filmmakers like Werner Herzog, and the US premiere of ‘Trouver Frisson,’ an homage to the inimitable Agnes Varda. And we’re proud to be welcoming Chris Hegedus, director of the documentary The War Room and other special guests for these screenings.”
The “Documentary Now…and Forever!” schedule is as follows:
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 14
7:00 PM The World Premiere of Season 53, Episodes 1 & 2 “Soldier of Illusion,” paired with Burden of Dreams
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 15
7:00 PM Season 51, Episode 1 “The Bunker,” paired with The War Room – Chris Hegedus, co-director of The War Room with DA Pennebaker, and Frazer Pennebaker of Pennebaker Hegedus Films to join for remarks
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 16
7:00 PM Season 50, Episode 1 “Sandy Passage,” paired with Grey Gardens
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 17
2:00 PM The US Premiere of Season 53, Episode 6 “Trouver Frisson,” paired with Beaches of Agnès
7:00 PM Season 52, Episode 3 “Original Cast Album: Co-Op,” paired with Original Cast Album: “Company” – Chris Hegedus of Pennebaker Hegedus Films, to join for remarks
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 18
2:00 PM Season 51, Episodes 6 & 7 “Mr. Runner Up,” paired with The Kid Stays in the Picture
7:00 PM Season 50, Episode 4 “The Eye Doesn’t Lie,” paired with The Thin Blue Line
MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 19
7:00 PM Season 51, Episode 4 “Globesman,” paired with Salesman
TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 20
7:00 PM Season 51, Episode 3 “Parker Gail’s Location Is Everything,” paired with Swimming to Cambodia
In celebration of “Documentary Now…and Forever!,” AMC+ will also host some of the timeless documentaries that acted as inspiration for Documentary Now! episodes from September 14 through September 20, then again in October in line with the Season 53 premiere. The line-up will include:
- That Summer, which inspired “Sandy Passage”
- The Thin Blue Line, which inspired “The Eye Doesn’t Lie”
- Jiro Dreams of Sushi, which inspired “Juan Likes Rice & Chicken” (Note: Only available in October)
- Stop Making Sense, which inspired “Final Transmission” (Note: Only Available in October)
- The Source Family, which inspired “Batsh*t Valley, Parts 1 & 2”
- Marina Abramovich: The Artist is Present, which inspired “Waiting for the Artist”
- The September Issue, which inspired all-new episode “Two Hairdressers in Bagglyport”
- Faces Places, which inspired all-new episode “Trouver Frisson”
The upcoming season of the critically acclaimed comedy, co-created by Fred Armisen, Bill Hader, Seth Meyers and Rhys Thomas, executive produced by Lorne Michaels and produced by Broadway Video, will include six all-new documentary-inspired episodes:
- The two-part, season premiere episode, “Soldier of Illusion,” written by John Mulaney and starring Alexander Skarsgård (The Northman, Big Little Lies), Nicholas Braun (Succession, Zola) and August Diehl (Inglourious Basterds), was inspired by the Werner Herzog-focused documentary Burden of Dreams. In the early 1980s, a visionary German filmmaker (Skarsgård) tries to will his magnum opus into existence while working in the remote, punishing conditions of the Russian Ular mountains. Kevin Bishop (Miracle Workers, The Tracey Ullman Show), Gana Bayarsaikhan (Wonder Woman), Matthias Rimpler (Ludzie i Bogowie) and Fred Armisen will also star, with Documentary Now! ensemble alumni Deb Hiett returning as narrator.
- “Two Hairdressers in Bagglyport” will star two-time Academy Award®-winner and Documentary Now! alumniCate Blanchett (Blue Jasmine, Carol), as well as Emmy®-nominated actress Harriet Walter (Succession, Killing Eve). Paying homage to documentaries 3 Salons at the Seaside and The September Issue, the episode is a fly-on-the-wall portrait of a hair salon owner (Walter) and her staff (Blanchett), in the small coastal village of Bagglyport as they prepare their yearly stylebook. The episode was written by series co-creator Seth Meyers and will also star Fred Armisen as George the Postman.
- “How They Threw Rocks” will feature Welsh actors Trystan Gravelle (Lord of The Rings: The Rings of Power, A Discovery of Witches), Jonathan Pryce (The Two Popes, The Crown) and John Rhys-Davies (The Lord of The Rings, Indiana Jones), as well as legendary Welsh singer Tom Jones. In the vein of When We Were Kings and other great explorations of sport, the episode chronicles the Welsh sport of Craig Maes, also known as “Field Rock,” and the iconic 1974 bout dubbed “The Melon vs. The Felon (Gravelle).” Fellow Welsh actor Sam C. Wilson (Dodger) joins as infamous Craig Maes competitor Sior Strawboss or “The Melon.” The episode was written by series co-creator Seth Meyers.
- “My Monkey Grifter” will be helmed by actor Jamie Demetriou (The Afterparty). Drawing inspiration from My Octopus Teacher, the episode follows Benjamin Clay (Demetriou), a filmmaker who forms a deep, emotional, and financially taxing relationship with a monkey who may have ulterior motives. The episode was written by series co-creator Seth Meyers, with Fred Armisen joining as Detective Blakely.
- “Trouver Frisson”features French actor Liliane Rovère (Call My Agent!, Family Business) and Ronald Guttman (Godfather of Harlem, Sister of the Groom). Inspired by Agnes Varda’s Gleaners and I and Beaches of Agnes, celebrated French filmmaker Ida Leos (Rovère) searches for why she no longer experiences “frisson” – the goosebumps that have always been her guide. Written by series producers Matt Pacult and Tamsin Rawady and co-directed by Micah Gardner, the episode also stars Documentary Now! alumni Gary Kraus.
The six-time Emmy®-nominated Documentary Now! debuted to rave reviews from critics and quickly became a fan favorite thanks to its insightful take on some of the most well-known documentary films. Each episode takes viewers back in time to honor groundbreaking documentaries. Season 52 guest stars included Cate Blanchett, Owen Wilson, Michael Keaton, Natasha Lyonne, John Mulaney, Michael C. Hall, Taran Killam, Richard Kind, and more.
Documentary Now! is executive produced by Fred Armisen, Bill Hader, Seth Meyers, Rhys Thomas, Alex Buono, John Mulaney, Broadway Video’s Andrew Singer, and Lorne Michaels. Once again, Thomas and Buono are the show directors with Lee Groombridge, Matt Pacult and Tamsin Rawady serving as producers. Alice Mathias and David Cress co-executive produce, with Eddie Michaels and Andrew Garland producing for Broadway Video and Erik Kenward serving as consulting producer. EMU Films produced in the UK and Belgium with Jim Mooney, Michael Elliott and Wali Ullah serving as executives.
For updates on Documentary Now!, please check out:
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IFC Center, a division of AMC Networks, is a five-screen, state-of-the-art cinema in the heart of New York’s Greenwich Village that opened in June 2005 following an extensive renovation of the historic Waverly Theater. IFC Center presents the very best in new foreign-language, American independent and documentary features to audiences and is also known for its innovative repertory series and festivals, showing short films before its regular features in the ongoing “Short Attention Span Cinema” program, and special events such as the guest-curated “Movie Nights” and frequent in-person appearances by filmmakers. In 2010, IFC Center launched the acclaimed DOC NYC festival, a high-profile showcase that celebrates nonfiction filmmaking and is now the largest documentary festival in the US. For additional theater information, current and upcoming program details and more, visit ifccenter.com.