Sundance inks Petty documentary

World premiere deal made with Warner Bros.

The Sundance Channel has made a deal with Warner Bros. for the world TV premiere of Peter Bogdanovich’s four-hour docu “Runnin’ Down a Dream: Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers.”

Laura Michalchyshyn, exec VP-general manager of programming and creative affairs for Sundance, said the documentary follows the group from its beginnings in 1974 to performances from the past year. The film includes concert perfs, archival footage and interviews, both new and previously recorded, with George Harrison, Ringo Starr, Bob Dylan and Johnny Depp, among many others.

The length of “Runnin’ Down” made it impractical for Warners to release the movie theatrically, so it’ll kick off on Sundance on Oct. 29, following its Oct. 14 screening at the New York Film Festival. Warner Bros. Records’ Rhino label will work on the DVD of the movie.

Michalchyshyn said she got word of the availability of “Runnin’ Down” from Rhino Records, which chose Sundance at least in part because of its commitment to music programming, including recent showings of “The Blues Brothers,” “Topsy-Turvy” and the 2005 feature-length docu “Leonard Cohen: I’m Your Man.”

And every Monday, Sundance schedules docus for 12 hours straight starting at noon.

“We also promised not to make any cuts or changes to the documentary,” said Michalchyshyn. “And we won’t interrupt it with commercials.”

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