Oscilloscope takes Of Montreal doc for world

Oscilloscope Laboratories has acquired the worldwide rights to Jason Miller's Kickstarter-funded documentary The Past is a Grotesque Animal, on the indie pop-rock band of Montreal. (Pictured: frontman Kevin Barnes)
April 1, 2014

Oscilloscope Laboratories has acquired the worldwide rights to Jason Miller’s Kickstarter-funded documentary The Past is a Grotesque Animal, which looks at the indie pop-rock band Of Montreal.

The film is a profile of frontman Kevin Barnes (pictured), whose musical ambitions often come at the cost of personal relationships. As he struggles to balance his career with other parts of his life, he begins to question whether or not there is a future for Of Montreal. The doc – the result of about US$100,000 in Kickstarter pledges – is currently in post-production.

“As fans of Of Montreal, we have been excited by this project since we first became aware of it via Kickstarter,” said Dan Berger and David Laub, who oversee marketing, distribution and acquisitions at Oscilloscope, in a statement. “We were exceptionally pleased when The Past is a Grotesque Animal turned out to be  an incredibly well-made, relatable film and are extremely excited to come on board at this early stage to unleash it upon the masses.”

Meanwhile, filmmaker Miller said: “I’m not sure if they actually liked the whole film, or just the scene with Kevin Barnes’ penis flapping around, but either way, I’m thrilled to release my first film with the infamous Oscilloscope Laboratories.”

And band frontman Barnes added: “It is difficult for me to be totally objective about the documentary, but I feel that it is a fairly unflinching and honest portrait of my life in music over the last 20 years.”

The doc was produced and edited by Miller and Andrew Napier, executive produced by Polyvinyl Records’ Matt Lunsford and Seth Hubbard, and is a production of Shrine.

About The Author
Senior staff writer Frederick Blichert comes to realscreen with a background as a journalist and freelance film critic. He has previously written for VICE, Paste Magazine, Senses of Cinema, Xtra, Canadian Cinematographer and elsewhere. He holds a Master of Arts in film studies from Carleton University and a Master of Journalism from the University of British Columbia.