Tribeca Film Festival Music Events: A Taylor Swift Talk, J.Lo Doc, Machine Gun Kelly’s Acting Breakout and More

·14-min read

Since its 2002 genesis, the Tribeca Film Festival has celebrated music to a degree uncommon in the film fest world, and the 2022 event gathering again includes a wide array of music-focused events, including not just documentaries and music-centric narrative features but music video premieres, artist conversations, and master classes.

The overlap between film and music is evident right from the start Wednesday night, when the festival will host the world premiere of Jennifer Lopez’s Netflix documentary, “Halftime.” The doc follows the singer’s evolution as an artist, from her performances onscreen and on stages around the world to her 2020 Super Bowl halftime show and beyond.

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This year, the lineup will also incorporate songwriters and producers in conversation, including what will surely be a full house at the Beacon Theater for Taylor Swift as she shows and talks about her “All Too Well” short film. Also on deck for conversations are Pharrell Williams, Steve Aoki and Common, who will be receiving the 2022 Harry Belafonte Voice for Social Justice Award.

One of the most anticipated narrative films is “Taurus,” a starring vehicle for Machine Gun Kelly in a semi-fictional role, with the artist set to appear after the Beacon premiere.

Rounding up some of the brightest in New York’s music scene, the fest will also feature masterclasses taught by Kanye West’s documentarians, directors Coodie and Chike, and veteran music supervisor Randall Poster, who has made the new “Birdsong Project” a passion project.

A few films will feature performances by their subjects following the screenings, including hip-hop star Lil Baby taking the stage after the world premiere of “Untrapped: The Story of Lil Baby.” The group Of Monsters and Men will also perform following a doc about the band. DJ Quik, Das and Kurupt will take part in a multi-artist salute to the D.O.C. after a documentary about that influential rapper.

There will also be an online premiere of “The Lost Weekend: A Love Story,” a feature documentary that has May Pang recounting her life in rock ‘n’ roll and the whirlwind 18 months spent as a friend, lover and confidante to John Lennon in the mid-’70s.

See the full lineup of music-related projects that will be presented at the festival June 8-19, below.

Wednesday, June 8

“Halftime” – documentary feature

The new Amanda Micheli-directed Netflix documentary film follows Jennifer Lopez as she reflects on her professional and personal milestones. As the title would indicate, one of the settings is her galvanizing halftime show at the Super Bowl in 2020, symbolically setting up how “the kickoff to the second half of Lopez’s life,” according to the film’s description, “as she lays bare her evolution as a Latina, a mother, and an artist, taking agency in her career and using her voice for a greater purpose.”

TIME: 7 p.m.
LOCATION: United Palace

Thursday, June 9 

“Brave” – music video 

The artist Eris is described as being “on a journey across the stars when she crashe(s). What will she find in this new place? The voids?” The video was directed by August Blue and written and produced by Nathan Lee.

TIME: 5:30 p.m.
LOCATION: Village East by Angelika

“Pale Ember” – music video

“Pale Ember is a beautiful and heartbreaking examination of love, loss, and looking back.” Music video directed, produced and written by Brad Tobler and Bonnie Story. With Kelli Baker, Chris Jarosz.

TIME: 5:30 p.m.
LOCATION: Village East by Angelika at Theater 6

“Taurus” – feature film

The feature starring debut of Colson Baker — aka Machine Gun Kelly — is about a rising but troubled musician in search for the inspiration to record one last song, pushing himself “deep into the void.” The work of fiction explores fame, addiction, the artistic process and the music industry. The film was directed and written by Tim Sutton, and Machine Gun Kelly contributes music as well as starring. He’ll make a special appearance after the premiere.

TIME: 8 p.m.
LOCATION: Beacon Theatre

“Tíu” – documentary feature

This feature documentary focuses on the multi-platinum Icelandic band Of Monsters and Men, as they commemorate the 10th anniversary of their debut album “My Head Is An Animal.” Directed by Dean Deblois, the film is offered in both English and Icelandic with English subtitles. After the movie, Of Monsters and Men will perform.

TIME: 8 p.m.
LOCATION: the Indeed Theater

Friday, June 10

“Evolver” – virtual reality experience

“Evolver” is a collective virtual reality experience that drops audiences deep inside the landscape of the body, following the flow of oxygen through our personal ecosystems, to a single “breathing” cell. Through this experimental narrative, “it becomes clear that breath not only sparks life, but also connects us to the natural world through the cycle of respiration.” Executive produced by Edward R. Pressman and Terrence Malick, the film has music from several famous names — Jonny Greenwood, Meredith Monk, Jóhann Jóhannsson and Howard Skempton.

TIME: 12 p.m.
LOCATION: Tribeca Immersive, Evolver @ 120 Broadway

Cancellations and Hidden Costs: The Reality of Pandemic-Era Nightlife – conversation

Although New York has officially ended most pandemic restrictions, this conversation will examine how the continuing health crisis has affected nightlife businesses. “From adopting a hybrid event model to revamping booking strategies, live music venues and event organizers are forced to remain in problem-solving mode as they plan for the near future,” reads a description. “As we get through year three of the pandemic, how are these players recovering from the financial damage of lockdown and how are they prepared for future shocks?

TIME: 5:30 p.m.
LOCATION: Tribeca Festival Music Lounge @ Baby’s All Right Talk

Pharrell in Conversation 

Pharrell Williams will discuss his career as a recording artist, producer, songwriter, philanthropist, fashion designer and entrepreneur. He’ll also share details of his creative ecosystem and future plans.

TIME: 6 p.m.
LOCATION: BMCC Tribeca PAC

“The D.O.C” – feature documentary

This doc is described as “a love letter and inspirational hip-hop archive,” with director David Caplan covering the iconic career of the titular hip-hop legend, who’d described as “more than likely your favorite rapper’s favorite rapper.” Written and co-produced by the DOC himself, the film also has appearances by Dr. Dre, Eminem, Snoop Dogg, Erykah Badu, Ice Cube, Xzibit, Too $hort, Kurupt, Daz and Tone Loc. After the premiere, there’ll be a special birthday performance for the DOC by DJ Quik, Das, Kurupt and surprise guests.

TIME: 8 p.m.
LOCATION: Beacon Theatre

“Angelheaded Hipster: The Songs of Marc Bolan & T. Rex” – feature documentary

The world premiere celebrates the life and work of glam-rock pioneer Marc Bolan, combined with a behind-the-scenes look at the eponymous tribute album put together by Hal Willner. Directed and written by Ethan Silverman, the film includes appearances by Gloria Jones, Rolan Bolan, Ringo Starr, Nick Cave, Willner, Joan Jett and David Bowie as well as the late Bolan.

TIME: 8 p.m.
LOCATION: The Indeed Theater

“The Lost Weekend: A Love Story” – feature documentary

May Pang lovingly recounts her life in rock ‘n’ roll and her whirlwind 18 months spent with John Lennon. Directed and produced by Eve Brandstein, Richard Kaufman, Stuart Samuels.

TIME: 8 p.m.
LOCATION: Online Premiere

Show Me the Body and YL perform at the Tribeca Festival Music Lounge

TIME: 8 p.m.
LOCATION: Tribeca Festival Music Lounge @ Baby’s All Right

“Living in the Heart of Love” – music video

The “Living In the Heart of Love” music video tracks two female heroes and a cast of like-minded characters who traverse Paris after hours, down for whatever magic the night has in store. Directed and written by Charles Mehling. With Marguerite Thiam Donnadieu, Nailia Harzoune, Marion Giovalucchi. In French with English subtitles.

TIME: 9:15 p.m.
LOCATION: Village East by Angelika

“Time In Berlin” – music video

“Time In Berlin” is a music video revolving around the “twin themes of self-fulfillment and self-discovery through a significant other, charging the concept through the time constraint.” Directed by Javier Blanco Chiocchio. Written by Stephan Jenkins, Javier Blanco Chiocchio and Robert Grant. Produced by Ezequiel Debernardi, Javier Blanco Chiocchio. With Emiko Morgaine, Remo Trajano, Ruut Ahonen, Camila Canteros and Rafael Miranda.

TIME: 9:15 p.m.
LOCATION: Village East by Angelika

“Menudo: Forever Young” – series

This HBO Max series follows the rise and fall of Latin American boy band Menudo, bringing viewers into the world of the popular teen idols’ global tours, magazine covers, ‘80s outfits and screaming fangirls. But the four-part documentary reveals “that behind the glitz and glamour was a web of abuse and exploitation at the hands of the band’s manager, Edgardo Diaz.” The premiere will be followed by a conversation with directors Angel Manuel Soto and Kris Rios, with members of Menudo.

TIME: 2 p.m.
LOCATION: The Indeed Theater

A Conversation with Taylor Swift

Following a screening of Taylor Swift’s 2021 extended music video “All Too Well: The Short Film,” which she directed, wrote, produced and starred in, Swift will sit down for a conversation to discuss her approach as a filmmaker.

TIME: 3 p.m.
LOCATION: Beacon Theatre

Detroit Techno w/ Kevin Sauderson & Blake Blaxter – conversation

This discussion will be an exploration of the beginnings of techno music and how Detroit was the creative and cultural hub for the creation and development of these beats. From Detroit to Chicago to London and Berlin, this talk will trace techno’s origins in the African American community.

TIME: 3:30 p.m.
LOCATION: Tribeca Festival Music Lounge @ Baby’s All Right

Music As Narrative: The Art of Screen Scoring – conversation

This BMI panel will take a macro look at how producers compose for film and television, focusing on their techniques when approaching genre, emotion, and rhythmic detail.

TIME: 5:30 p.m.
LOCATION: Tribeca Festival Music Lounge @ Baby’s All Right

“2 Point and Kill” – music video

This will be the world premiere of British-Nigerian artist Little Simz’ “2 Point and Kill” music video, directed by Ebeneza Blanche.

TIME: 5:45 p.m.
LOCATION: Village East by Angelika

“Untrapped: The Story of Lil Baby” – documentary feature

This will be the world premiere of the Lil Baby-focused feature documentary following the rapper through years of never-before-seen footage, directed by Karam Gill. After the movie, Lil Baby will perform.

TIME: 8 p.m.
LOCATION: Beacon Theatre

“God Said Give ‘Em Drum Machines” – documentary feature

A nostalgic music documentary that showcases the beginnings of techno music and how Detroit was the creative and cultural hub for the creation of one of the most celebrated genres in the world. Kristian R. Hill directs, with appearances by Kevin Saunderson, Juan Atkins, Derrick May, Santonio Echols, Eddie Fowlkes, Blake Baxter, Richie Hawtin and Mike Huckaby. Following the film, Inner City and Blake Baxter will perform

TIME: 8 p.m.
LOCATION: the Indeed Theater

Performance by Onyx Collective and Duendita

Onyx Collective is a jazz ensemble whose name you may have overheard in downtown Manhattan at some point in the past couple of years. Onyx shows are often impromptu affairs: “the group will perform in a basement, at a cocktail lounge atop a hotel, and to the street from a storefront all in the course of a week.”

TIME: 8 p.m.
LOCATION: Tribeca Festival Music Lounge @ Baby’s All Right

Sunday, June 12th

“Gone Forgotten Year” – music video

The music video premiere for the song “Gone Forgotten Year” stars two Black queer lovers, separated by the global shutdowns of 2020-2021, who finally reunite. Directed by Brandon Burks, with Jelani Remy and Josh Breckenridge.

TIME: 2 p.m.
LOCATION: Tribeca PAC

“Alhamdu | Muslim Futurism” – feature film

“Alhamdu | Muslim Futurism” is “an experimental vision of resistance and liberation through the lens of Muslim joy, flourishing, and imagination.” Directed by Abbas Rattani, the film includes Neelam Hakeem, Ramy El-Etreby, Fatma Almheiri, Fatima Dicko, the Almomani Sisters and Maaz Ali, and is in Arabic and English with English subtitles.

TIME: 8 p.m.
LOCATION: Tribeca Festival Music Lounge @ Baby’s All Right

“How Long Gone Live” – live podcast

Hosts Chris Black and Jason Stewart will engage in conversation with experimental drummer Eli Keszler, followed by a performance.

TIME: 4 p.m.
LOCATION: Tribeca Festival Music Lounge @ Baby’s All Right

“Hot & Heavy” – music video 

“Hot & Heavy” was the first music video released for songwriter Lucy Dacus’ acclaimed 2021 album “Home Video,” directed by Dacus, Marin Leong and Jordan Rodericks.

TIME: 5:45 p.m.
LOCATION: Village East by Angelika: Theater 6

“Cross Country” – feature documentary

“Cross Country” explores Daniel Breland’s career and ponders its many plausible and alternative outcomes. Directed by James Larese.

TIME: 5:45 p.m.
LOCATION: Village East by Angelika

“Hallelujah: Leonard Cohen, A Journey, A Song” – documentary feature

A new doc  explores singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen as seen through his internationally renowned hymn, “Hallelujah.” Approved for production by Cohen just before his 80th birthday in 2014, the film makes use of never-before-seen archival materials from the Cohen Trust including Cohen’s personal notebooks, journals and photographs, performance footage, and rare audio recordings and interviews. After the premiere, there’ll be a musical performance paying tribute to Cohen, with Judy Collins, Amanda Shires, Sharon Robinson and a surprise guest.

TIME: 6 p.m.
LOCATION: Beacon Theatre

Performance by the Drunken Canal’s Battle of the Bands

TIME: 7 p.m.
LOCATION: Tribeca Festival Music Lounge @ Baby’s All Right

“Music Pictures: New Orleans” – documentary feature

For this world premiere, the documentary “Music Pictures” presents four legacy portraits of New Orleans music figures: Irma Thomas, Little Freddie King, Ellis Marsalis and the Tremé Brass Band. Now in their 80s, these local masters continue their practice, for the love of the music, in the city that made them who they are. Directed and written by Ben Chace. After the movie, Thomas, King and Jason Marsalis will perform.

TIME: 8 p.m.
LOCATION: the Indeed Theater

“Hargrove” – documentary feature

The film follows Grammy award-winning jazz trumpet legend Roy Hargrove from Los Angeles to Paris, New York, Vienne, Perugia, Sète, Sorrento and Marseille during a summer European tour in what would be the last year of his life. From first-time director Eliane Henri, the film features interviews and live performances by Hargrove and additional appearances from Erykah Badu, Herbie Hancock, Mos Def, Robert Glasper, Wynton Marsalis and Sonny Rollins.

TIME: 8 p.m.
LOCATION: Waterfront Plaza at Brookfield Place, Battery Park City

Monday, June 13th

Steve Aoki in Conversation

Counting over 3 billion music streams to his name, Steve Aoki is a artist, DJ, producer and Dim Mak Records founder. He will discuss his latest projects.

TIME: 6 p.m.
LOCATION: the Indeed Theater

“Brutal” – music video 

Olivia Rodrigo’s “brutal” is an ode to those Y2K teen movies, video games, and TV shows that are so unabashedly funny, observant and cutting, directed by Petra Collins.

TIME: 8 p.m.
LOCATION: Village East by Angelika: Theater 2

Tuesday, June 14

Master Class – Documentary Directing with Coodie & Chike

Fresh off the success of the Kanye West documentary “Jeen-yuhs,” the Tribeca alumni team of Coodie and Chike return to the festival to discuss the art and ethics of directing documentary films with Loren Hammonds, the co-head of documentary at Time Studio.

TIME: 3 p.m.
LOCATION: SVA Theater 2 Beatrice

Wednesday, June 15

Master Class – Music Supervision with Randall Poster

Poster has worked as a music supervisor with renowned filmmakers like Wes Anderson, Todd Haynes, and Martin Scorcese to create some of the most notable films in history. In this conversation with Pitchfork contributing editor Jayson Greene, Poster will discuss the role of a music supervisor, selecting music for film and his latest undertaking, the multi-part album “The Birdsong Project.”

TIME: 3 p.m.
LOCATION: SVA Theater 2 Beatrice

The Harry Belafonte Voices for Social Justice Award honors Common

Having starred in numerous film and television projects, Common has also worked behind the scenes as an executive producer and on multiple soundtracks for which he has received numerous accolades. He will be joined in conversation with New York Times columnist and MSNBC political analyst Charles Blow.

TIME: 6 p.m.
LOCATION: SVA Theater 1 Silas

Friday, June 17

“Velvet Goldmine” – feature film

A 25-year reunion and screening of the musical drama  written and directed by Todd Haynes, starring Ewan McGregor, Toni Collette, Micko Westmoreland and Eddie Izzard. After the Screening, Haynes will join in conversation with producer Christine Vachon, McGregor and Westmoreland.

TIME: 7 p.m.
LOCATION: BMCC Tribeca PAC Velvet Goldmine

“Nothing Compares” – feature documentary

The story of Sinead O’Connor’s rise to fame explains how she went from being an international superstar to something of an outcast as controversy grew around her. “Nothing Compares” tells the story of O’Connor’s life as a musician, mother and iconoclast in her own words. Kathryn Ferguson directed the Showtime Documentary Films release.

TIME: 8 p.m.
LOCATION: SVA Theater 1 Silas

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