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ARTIFACT

USA, 2012 (MIFF 2013, Backbeat)

Director: Bartholomew Cubbins

ARTIFACT

"It started as a film about the making of an album, and it became a film about the most brutal and challenging conflict of our lives." – Jared Leto

Popular rockers Thirty Seconds To Mars, led by Jared Leto (Fight Club, Requiem For a Dream), were platinum-sellers in 2008, but hadn't seen a cent of royalties, so they tried to exit their contract. Their label sued them for $30 million. But what began as an object lesson from EMI resulted in a David-and-Goliath struggle between a floundering industry and its indentured servants.

While the band record their breakthrough third album, This is War, the mysterious Bartholomew Cubbins (a dead ringer for Leto) explodes the myth of the millionaire rock star, cutting between the lawyer's office and the studio floor. Fellow music-makers including Linkin Park, OK Go and System Of A Down, and former EMI execs all spill the beans, providing a detailed, often Spinal Tap-esque insight into the harsh realities of modern music making.

Ultimately, Artifact speaks to all music lovers and is a funny, ridiculous reminder that while music always changes, business will always be business.

People's Choice Documentary Award winner at the Toronto International Film Festival.

"A compelling guide through the current state of the music industry, in all its wretched decay." – The Playlist

D Bartholomew Cubbins P Jared Leto, Emma Ludbrook WS Emma Ludbrook TD HD Cam/2012

See also...

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BAYOU MAHARAJAH THE TRAGIC GENIUS OF JAMES BOOKER

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"The best black, gay, one-eyed junkie piano genius New Orleans has ever produced." - Dr John ... A run-in with a jukebox in New Orleans was all director Lily Keber needed to know that James Booker wa… More »

BIG NAME NO BLANKET

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The fans knew him as the "black Mick Jagger". His band kick-started Aboriginal rock, releasing the first ever Aboriginal-language rock songs in the mainstream. His name was George Rrurrambu and this … More »

COSMIC PSYCHOS BLOKES YOU CAN TRUST

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They were adopted by grunge nobility, but the main reason Cosmic Psychos frontman Ross Knight wore the flannel shirt was because he's a farmer. ... Commercial and music video director (and musician h… More »

DOWNLOADED

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The story of Napster's Shawn Fanning and Sean Parker, whose desire to share music wounded an entire industry. ... Fans loved it, Metallica and Dr Dre vowed to destroy it, and after three years plunde… More »

© Melbourne International Film Festival 2013.

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