Sneak peak at Kopple’s Woodstock opus on tap

'My Generation' lacked funding for post-production

One of the more anticipated docs to unspool at Sundance will be Barbara Kopple’s long-awaited “My Generation,” a behind-the-scenes chronicle of the Woodstock ’94 fest that also juxtaposes footage from Woodstock ’69. Kopple describes the approximately 2-hour film as “looking at 30 years of youth at the Woodstock festivals.”

The film will be presented as a work-in-progress at a one-time-only “surprise screening” at 2:30 p.m. on Jan 25 at Prospector’s Square Theater. Shot on 16mm, with footage of several bands — including Nine Inch Nails, Metallica, the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Porno for Pyros — captured on high definition video, “My Generation” is the culmination of a massive effort that dates back to Feb. 1994, when Kopple started filming her opus. Polygram Films abandoned the production early on after sinking $1 million into the project.

On her own, Kopple assembled an initial “fine cut” but lacked the funding needed to complete post-production. In the interim, Kopple took her camera crew to the 1999 Woodstock fest, marked by disorganization and unruly crowds. Kopple’s film has yet to land a distributor.

“Working toward this Sundance date has really made us make a decision on what should go in and what should come out,” says Kopple. “But it’s an enormous opportunity for me to see what people think of it.”

The two-time Oscar-winner last visited Sundance in 1997 to unspool her Woody Allen jazz doc “Wild Man Blues,” which showed in competiton. Her Oscar-winning 1990 pic “American Dream” was also shown in competition at Sundance, winning the Grand Jury Prize, Filmmakers Trophy and the Audience Award.

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