Starman: David Bowie hits the big screen once again
To commemorate its 40th anniversary, sci-fi drama The Man Who Fell to Earth will be re-released in cinemas across the UK
Poignantly, the year that witnessed the tragic passing of the great David Bowie also marks 40 years since the UK release of The Man Who Fell to Earth, the sci-fi drama featuring the singer's era-defining lead performance. To mark the anniversary, StudioCanal is releasing a new digitally remastered 4K restoration of the classic, which was in the works before Bowie's untimely death.
The cult science-fiction odyssey, with Bowie in his debut feature role as an alien with superior intelligence, was directed by Nicolas Roeg – well-known for his extraordinary film Don't Look Now.
The Man Who Fell to Earth still resonates four decades later. As a corrosive portrait of the ways of the modern world and as a moving commentary on the loneliness of the outsider – described by the New York Times as "absorbing and beautiful" – it's a treat for contemporary audiences. The new version has been given the thumbs-up by original cinematographer Anthony Richmond and the blessing of Roeg.
Distributed by Park Circus, the film opens nationwide from 9 September. The alien epic will also be available with new bonus material on Blu-ray, DVD or to download from 24 October as part of the Vintage Classics collection. A special collector's edition will follow.
A couple of venues in the capital are celebrating the re-release with panache. The Curzon Soho, which is faced with the threat of demolition, is using the release as part of its campaign to save the cinema. Declaring 9 September as David Bowie Day, it's organised a special screening and an agenda of Thin White Duke-based events in the area.
At the same time, Danny Boyle is introducing a special screening at Hackney Picturehouse. The Oscar-winning director has personal connections with the film, having often cited it as one of his all-time favourites and Roeg as a crucial influence on his own career. Following the screening, Bowie-inspired tunes are promised in the bar.
The unique and talented starman from another planet will be fondly remembered – and much missed.