Docs

HBO Docs takes Vulcan Productions’ “The Cold Blue”

HBO Documentary Films has acquired U.S. TV rights to feature-length doc The Cold Blue from Paul G. Allen’s Vulcan Productions. The film explores the legacy of the Eighth Air Force, who flew numerous ...
September 27, 2018

HBO Documentary Films has acquired U.S. TV rights to feature-length doc The Cold Blue from Paul G. Allen’s Vulcan Productions.

The film explores the legacy of the Eighth Air Force, who flew numerous deadly missions in World War II. Realscreen previously presented an exclusive trailer of the Erik Nelson-directed film.

It also features newly restored 4K footage and outtakes, shot by Academy Award-winning director William Wyler for his 1944 documentary The Memphis Belle: A Story of a Flying Fortress (pictured).

In 1943, Wyler went to Europe to document the war effort. There, his crew flew actual combat missions on B-17 bombers. One of his cinematographers was killed in the process.

Wyler’s raw footage was recently discovered in the vaults of the National Archives, and director Nelson built the film out of the recovered material after a frame-by-frame restoration.

The Cold Blue is a production of Paul G. Allen’s Vulcan Productions and Creative Differences, directed and produced by Nelson. It is produced by Peter Hankoff and executive produced by Allen, Carole Tomko, Rocky Collins, Catherine Wyler, Clark Bunting and Dave Harding.

“After 75 years, the footage has been restored to a condition better-than-new, so we can bring this real-life story of aerial combat to a 21st-century audience,” said Collins, EP for Vulcan, in a statement.

The Cold Blue premiered at AFI Docs and will screen at the New York Film Festival on Sept. 29 and 30, before it debuts on HBO in June 2019.

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.

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