The Perth premiere of the Danny Garcia Directed Film, Stiv – No Compromise No Regrets, is coming up at The Backlot on 13 April. The movie chronicles the life and times of Stiv Bators, legendary frontman of the Dead Boys and The Lords of The New Church. This is a man who knew how to live and was known for his music and legendary live performances. An important punk icon, no less! Around The Sound, had the privilege of a chat with Director, Danny Garcia in the lead up to the premiere.
ATS: Punk music is a focus of your work, with films on Johnny Thunders, The Clash and Sid and Nancy coming before this one. What is it about punk music that still inspires you to make films about the movement?
DG: Punk Rock has always been a source of inspiration for me. When I was a kid I was a fan of The Clash, a band that were all about empowering the kids from the streets and telling them: you don’t have to work in a factory, you can be somebody and do whatever it is you want to do.
ATS: What’s your personal take on punk, and it’s relevance today?
DG: To me it means freedom which is what Punk was all about when it began. It was an inclusive movement where everybody was accepted regardless of their sex, creed or colour of skin and that’s something amazing in itself when you think about the kind of world we live in today. But, Punk is an attitude as John Holmstrom wisely says in Stiv. It’s not about the music or the clothes, it’s the attitude that matters.
ATS: Did you have a big archive of footage to work with when making No Compromise, No Regrets? How did you decide what to include in the final cut?
DG: When we started this project we knew there was some key footage we had to have which was the Dead Boys live at CBGB’s in 77 and the Lords last show at the Astoria in 89, when Stiv parted ways with the band onstage with a memorable stunt. By the time we were editing the last cut we had obtained unseen footage of Frankenstein, Dead Boys and Stiv’s first band Mother Goose as well as footage of Stiv taken during his 40th birthday on a boat on the river Senne courtesy of Thee Hypnotics, who spent some time in Paris with him during the last months of his life. All of this material is so great we tried including as much of it as possible in the film.
ATS: Stiv Bators was known for his uncompromising approach to his music and life. What are you hoping audiences will take away from their viewing of the film?
DG: Stiv was really a determined person. He proved that one can really achieve great things just by being smart and knowing how to connect the dots. If he did it you can do it too. Again, the very essence of
what Punk is all about.
ATS: How has the film been received by audiences so far?
DG: Very well fortunately. I’m glad we’re putting Stiv back on the map with a film and a soundtrack album and that the new generations can learn a thing or two about that era.
Stiv – No Compromise No Regrets has its Perth premiere at The Backlot on 13 April. For more information and tickets go to: https://www.facebook.com/events/1765228153578919/