Sony Pictures Classics Presents EAT THAT QUESTION: Frank Zappa In His Own Words, a Film By Thorsten Schütte. Opening At The Film Forum In NYC & NuArt In Los Angeles June 24th, 2016 and Then Around The Country. Watch the film trailer here.
Shattering conventions—musical, social, political —was the life’s work of Frank Zappa, the iconoclastic musical genius, rock legend and intellectual firebrand of the late 20th century whose work is equally revered by hardcore rockers and serious musical scholars. Zappa, who died in 1993 at the age of 52, is the subject and spokesman of EAT THAT QUESTION: Frank Zappa in His Own Words, Thorsten Schütte’s documentary which premiered at 2016 Sundance and will be released by Sony Pictures Classics.
Schütte’s film, opening June 24, 2016 at the Film Forum in New York, and in Los Angeles, is an energetic celebration of Zappa and his extraordinary musical and political legacy, told entirely through a treasure trove of archival footage culled from the performer's 30-year career in entertainment. Weaving together rare TV interviews and performances from around the world, the film explores Frank Zappa's bravura musicianship and eccentric charisma--his outspoken and outrageous combination of slicing acerbic wit, righteous indignation, and anti-authoritarian irreverence.
Frank Zappa defied categorization: he looked every inch the ‘60s freak and reckless anarchist, but he was a highly disciplined musician and rigorous band leader who condemned drug use and scorned the hippie movement. Both a hard-rock guitar god and self-taught composer, he was influenced by and made his indelible mark on rock, pop, jazz, and modern avant-garde music. He brought caustic humor, fierce intelligence, and angry passion to his battles with the record industry, the media establishment, and self-appointed guardians of morality; a fervent anti-censorship advocate, and strong believer in the democratic process, he was also a filmmaker, playwright, producer, family man and father to a musical next generation.
He created blunt, eccentric and satirical compositions with titles such as “Willie the Pimp,” “Latex Solar Beef,” “Saint Alfonzo’s Pancake Breakfast,” “The Grand Wazoo,” “Titties ‘n Beer,” “Cosmik Debris,” and “The Duke of Prunes,” from among a catalogue of over 2,000 songs, that offended and turned off many but the legions who ‘got him’ were rabid fans of the ‘dental floss’ tycoon.
Through archival film material of Zappa live, once buried in oblivion and unearthed by Schütte, EAT THAT QUESTION portrays the essence and landmarks of a unique career and creates an eclectic portrait of one of the most original composers and cerebral minds of the 20th century. Zappa's provocative music and ideas cut across generations, while his goal of freeing the listener from conformity still resonates today.
Produced by Estelle Fialon at Les Films du Poisson, and UFA Fiction, EAT THAT QUESTION: Frank Zappa In His Own Words runs 90 minutes.
The Zappa Family is thrilled that ‘Eat That Question—Frank Zappa in His Own Words’ is finally out in the world. The film that Thorsten has made provides a new way for old and new Frank Zappa fans to discover more about FZ — in his own words. Our mother, Gail Zappa, collaborated with the filmmakers for many years on this project and would be so pleased.
– Ahmet Zappa
This film captures so much of the full throttle genius of our dad. He was a misfit who was ahead of his time and who stayed the creative course against all odds. I'm so grateful that this movie may reach even one person who commits (or recommits) to their inherent gifts regardless of the opposing messages the world can spew.
– Moon Zappa
THORSTEN SCHÜTTE has worked for over 20 years as an author, director and producer. He is in charge of the fiction and documentary department at the Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg in Germany and is one the founding members of the Stolen Moments - Namibian Music History Untold Research Group, which is currently preparing an international multimedia exhibition that focuses on the correlation between pop culture and the political struggle under apartheid. His films have been widely shown in international film festivals and on TV and include I Was The King Of Porn - The Adventurous Life of Lasse Braun, Land Matters, Namibia Generation X, Trip To Brazil and World Jazz.