BMG’s first feature-length documentary, Bad Reputation, a film on Joan Jett, has been confirmed to make its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival in January.
BMG is both financier and executive producer of the film, the first feature-length documentary project in a strategic move of the integrated record label and music publishing company into music-related films and TV production.
Bad Reputation explores the life of rock ‘n’ roll legend Joan Jett from her early days as founder of The Runaways and first meeting with collaborator Kenny Laguna to her enduring presence in pop culture as a rock ‘n’ roll pioneer.
Director is Kevin Kerslake (As I AM: The Life and Times of DJ AM, Nirvana Live! Tonight! Sold Out!), Editor – Joel Marcus, Producers – Peter Afterman and Carianne Brinkman, Film Sales – Dan Braun, Submarine Entertainment, who also executive produced Bad Reputation.
BMG SVP, Justus Haerder, spearheading BMG’s move into film and TV, said, “We have been pretty successful so far in keeping BMG’s strategic move into audiovisual production under wraps. Bad Reputation being selected for Sundance kind of blows the lid on that, but we are incredibly excited and proud. Joan Jett is an American icon and Kevin Kerslake has created a superb documentary which really captures her story.”
Haerder leads a four-person team. Based in BMG’s Los Angeles office it includes Director, Audiovisual, Kathy Rivkin-Daum, also serving as Executive Producer of Bad Reputation; Senior Manager, Audiovisual, William Kennedy and SVP, Audiovisual, Joe Thomas based in Chicago. The team is also supported by longtime industry veteran Bob Frank. Haerder has been working since 2014 to advance BMG’s move into developing and financing music-related film and TV content.
BMG CEO Hartwig Masuch said, “Be in no doubt: this is a strategic move. From YouTube to the rise of the music documentary to the increasing emphasis of Spotify and Apple Music on video content, technology is transforming music into a visual medium. These are early days, but increasingly we expect video content to develop into a formidable addition to BMG’s strategic offering to artists and songwriters alongside music publishing and recordings.”