The final year of John Lennon’s life is to be explored in a new documentary timed to mark the 40th anniversary of the death of The Beatles singer and guitarist.
John Lennon: The Final Year will look at the musician’s life in 1980 before he was tragically assassinated at age 40 outside The Dakota in New York City on December 8, 1980.
British distributor Drive has boarded for international sales and will start talks with global broadcasters and streaming platforms at the forthcoming Realscreen market in New Orleans. The film is produced by Reda Films, the company behind Nat Geo’s Emmy-nominated Brothers in War, and The Queen and Us producer History Television International.
In 1980, ten years on from the breakup of The Beatles, Lennon emerged from a five-year hiatus to release the album Double Fantasy, which contained songs written during his trip to Bermuda and songs written and performed by his wife Yoko Ono. The documentary will feature never-before-seen archive material and interviews with those who spent time with him during the year.
Drive is currently securing co-production financing for the film and will debut it to international broadcasters in New Orleans. The doc will be executive produced by Reda Films’ Scott L. Reda and Mark L. Reda, and the producer is Kenneth Womack of Wonderwall Communications. Womack’s forthcoming book John Lennon 1980: The Final Days in the Life of Beatle John will be published on Lennon’s birthday, October 9, 2020.
Lilla Hurst, Drive co-managing director, said, “This groundbreaking film gives exclusive access to people who were part of John Lennon’s life during his final year and sheds light on a part of his life that hasn’t been previously revealed. We were fascinated by this story as soon as it was brought to us and we look forward to launching the film to the content industry.”
Mark L. Reda, creative director of Reda Films added, “You think you know the story of John Lennon, but this is the remarkable true story of the final year of the Beatle legend.”
Reda Films has over 600 hours of programming and has amassed the largest privately owned film archive – Reda Archives, LLC – in the United States. The company has received numerous awards including a People’s Choice Award, Peabody Award, and Primetime Emmy Award (including nine nominations).