The Ecstasy of Wilko Johnson

The Julien Temple film on DVD

Cadiz Music are delighted to announce the release on DVD of the incredible Julien Temple film ‘The Ecstasy of Wilko Johnson’ on 4 December 2015 [Cat. No. CADIZDVD139]. This release comes lavishly packaged within a book that is emblazoned with a stunning painting by rock n roll artist Jonny Halifax, and boasts a brand new essay / fairytale by biographer Zoe Howe. Jonathan Demme said of the film, “A total game-changer using cinema at the highest level to look at life in the most creative of ways”.

‘The Ecstasy of Wilko Johnson’ is a film that confronts our worst nightmares of impending death, confounding expectations and turning them upside down. It tells the extraordinary, yet universal story of legendary musician Wilko Johnson who, diagnosed with incurable pancreatic cancer and given a few months to live, managed to accept his fate with uplifting positivity and defy the death sentence handed down to him. As the Hollywood Reporter said, “Ecstasy has enough sensory texture to nudge us toward the unexpected euphoria Johnson felt after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.” When Johnson announced he was not going to endure the proposed treatment, many anticipated the worst. Instead, Wilko threw himself into the music, a farewell tour and an album with Roger Daltrey that hit number three in the UK charts; and he carried on living. And of course that is the twist in this tale. Confounding the odds, Wilko now has the all clear, having now to integrate those enlightened lessons learnt under sentence of death into the unexpected and ongoing future of his life. The Independent said, “There is something comical but uplifting in the baffled ecstasy he feels in still being alive”.

As bonus features on ‘The Ecstasy of Wilko Johnson’, we include a ‘watch with Wilko’ version of the movie which follows every flicker of emotion as the subject of the movie views the finished product! Additionally there’s footage from the first rehearsal of the band after Wilko’s life-saving operation, plus also the full Q&A that took place after the film’s cinematic premiere at the Picturehouse on Shaftesbury Avenue. There’s also an interview with Wilko discussing ‘The Rat’ a painting that he created which has assumed an emblematic presence in his life.

‘The Ecstasy of Wilko Johnson’ has been received with real acclaim by the critics; and it has been shown at film festivals globally. Of Temple himself, The Guardian wrote, “Like Wilko, his films exude an irrepressibly punky joie de vivre. Encore!” Uncut described the film as “inspiring stuff”, Variety said, “Johnson’s unexpectedly buoyant response to very bad news makes for a film about saying goodbye that is itself void of grief, fear or regret”.

For more information on this release please contact Chris Hewlett PR on or 0845 601 2833

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