Over four decades after The Last Waltz, Martin Scorsese is revisiting the story of The Band with a new documentary, Once Were Brothers. The acclaimed filmmaker serves as executive producer on the movie alongside Ron Howard and Brian Grazer. Ahead of its debut in select theaters tomorrow, February 21st, Magnolia Pictures and Magnet Releasing have today shared an exclusive preview.
The clip features guitarist/songwriter Robbie Robertson speaking about what happened to The Band after their final concert, the legendary November 25th, 1976 performance at San Francisco’s Winterland Ballroom known as The Last Waltz. “We did The Last Waltz with the idea that we would put that away, take care of one another a bit, and really come back together again to make music like we had never made before,” says Robertson. “That was our dream… Everybody just forgot to come back.”
As Robertson’s “Once Were Brothers” plays, we see clips of The Band’s original members — Levon Helm, Richard Manuel, Rick Danko, and Garth Hudson — with their families. Then the voice of the late Helm comes through an archival recording to somewhat contradict Robertson’s take on the iconic rockers’ split. “By that time, I don’t think you could’ve kept The Band together,” he says. “Everybody had something they wanted to do, and after The Last Waltz, we started chasing those dreams.”
Take a look at the full clip below, and find out where Once Were Brothers is playing near you via its official website. The documentary also features interviews with Bruce Springsteen, Eric Clapton, Taj Mahal, and Scorsese himself, amongst others. The complete synopsis can be found below the video.
ONCE WERE BROTHERS: ROBBIE ROBERTSON AND THE BAND is a confessional, cautionary, and occasionally humorous tale of Robertson’s young life and the creation of one of the most enduring groups in the history of popular music, The Band. The film is a moving story of Robertson’s personal journey, overcoming adversity and finding camaraderie alongside the four other men who would become his brothers in music, together making their mark on music history. ONCE WERE BROTHERS blends rare archival footage, photography, iconic songs and interviews with Robertson’s friends and collaborators including Martin Scorsese, Bruce Springsteen, Eric Clapton, Van Morrison, and more.