Neon has officially announced its purchase of All the Beauty and the Bloodshed, an upcoming documentary created by director and producer Laura Poitras to explore the life and work of artist, photographer, and activist Nan Goldin. The documentary marks Poitras’s fourth documentary film, with her last release being Citizenfour (2014).
All the Beauty and the Bloodshed will follow the life of Nan Goldin, an American photographer and activist well-known for her work in and with the LGBTQ+ community, specifically during the HIV/AIDS crisis of the 1980s and 90s. Goldin’s most notable work is “The Ballad of Sexual Dependency” (1986) which depicts photographs of gay culture after the infamous Stonewall Riots. It even includes some of Goldin’s friends who were reportedly affected by the AIDS crisis in the 1990s, as well as scenes of sexual content and violence. Similarly, Goldin’s I’ll Be Your Mirror (1996) features gritty photographs of violent couples and drug use as a statement about the state of LGBT culture at the time.
Along with an in-depth examination of her photographs and social work, All the Beauty and the Bloodshed will also feature Nan Goldin’s involvement with the opioid epidemic and “‘ rare footage’ of Goldin’s activism against the Sackler family, as well as footage from Goldin’s slideshows and photography and interviews,” per The Hollywood Reporter. In 2017, Goldin founded Prescription Addiction Intervention Now (P.A.I.N.) to “call-out the close links between institutions and the Sackler family,” who founded the Purdue Pharma group and created OxyContin.
Laura Poitras and ‘All the Beauty and the Bloodshed’
All the Beauty and the Bloodshed will mark director Laura Poitras’ third documentary with Neon and one of the countless documentaries and documentary shorts created throughout her career; Poitras’ documentary career began in 1998 with Free Tibet, a documentary about the Tibetan Freedom Concerts and the Tibetan Independence movement that The Beastie Boys started. Some of Laura Poitras’ more recent works include My Country, My Country (2006) on the Iraq War and its sequel, The Oath (2010), which covers Abu Jandal and Salim Ahmed Hamdan’s involvement with Al-Qaeda. Citizenfour, Poitras’ 2014 documentary on Edward Snowden, marked her fourth collaboration with Neon founder and CEO Tom Quinn, according to Variety.
All the Beauty and the Bloodshed will be released in theaters this fall in conjunction with “This Will Not End Well,” a retrospective of Goldin’s work opening at the Moderna Museet in Stockholm and traveling through various museums in Europe. All the Beauty and the Bloodshed will also be making its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival, along with making appearances at the Toronto Film Festival and New York Film Festival, per Variety.
Jeff Skoll and Diane Weyermann will serve as executive producers under Participant Media, which previously backed Laura Poitras’ Citizenfour; in addition, Alex Kwartler and Hayley Theisen will also serve as executive producers alongside producers Howard Gertler, John Lyons, Goldin, Yoni Golijov and Laura Poitras.