Miles Davis: Horn player, bandleader, innovator.  Elegant, intellectual, vain. Callous, conflicted, controversial. Magnificent, mercurial. Genius. The very embodiment of cool. The man with a sound so beautiful it could break your heart.

The central theme of Miles Davis’s life was his restless determination to break boundaries and live life on his own terms. It made him a star—it also made him incredibly difficult to live with, for the people who loved him most.  Again and again, in music and in life, Miles broke with convention—and when he thought his work came to represent a new convention, he changed it again. Miles’s bold disregard for tradition, his clarity of vision, his relentless drive, and constant thirst for new experiences made him an inspiring collaborator to fellow musicians and a cultural icon to generations of listeners. It made him an innovator in music—from bebop to “cool jazz,” modern quintets, orchestral music, jazz fusion, rock ‘n’ roll, and even hip-hop.

Featuring never-before-seen archival footage, studio outtakes, and rare photos, Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool tells the story of a truly singular talent and unpacks the man behind the horn.

miles-davies-movie-posterMILES DAVIS: BIRTH OF THE COOL, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January 2019, will start its theatrical run at The Film Forum in New York on Friday, August 23, followed by The Landmark in Los Angeles on Friday, August 30 and in additional markets beginning in September.

“The story of Miles Davis – who he was as a man and artist – has often been told as the tale of a drug-addled genius,” said the director Stanley Nelson. “You rarely see a portrait of a man that worked hard at honing his craft, a man who deeply studied all forms of music, from Baroque to classical Indian. An elegant man who could render ballads with such tenderness yet hold rage in his heart from the racism he faced throughout his life. I’ve been fascinated with Miles since my college years and have dreamed of telling his story ever since. I am beyond thrilled to be working with Abramorama on the release of this film that is very special to me.”

With full access to the Miles Davis Estate, the film features never-before-seen footage, including studio outtakes from his recording sessions, rare photos and new interviews. Quincy Jones, Carlos Santana, Clive Davis, Wayne Shorter and Ron Carter are just a few of the luminaries weighing in on Davis’ life and career. Following its Sundance world premiere, Variety said the film was “superbly crafted” and “a tantalizing portrait: rich, probing, mournful, romantic, triumphant, tragic, exhilarating, and blisteringly honest” and Rolling Stone called the film “essential.”

Abramorama’s Richard Abramowitz (CEO) and Evan Saxon (Head of West Coast Acquisitions and Business Development) added, “The opportunity to work with Stanley is an honor and to be able to do it on this film is particularly rewarding as we’ve long prided ourselves in presenting films about the greatest talents in musical history. Miles Davis is in the Pantheon along with The Beatles, Dylan, Coltrane and a very few others who’ve changed the sound of contemporary music and culture.”

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SCREENINGS across the United States

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