A Pavement Movie Is in the Works

Alex Ross Perry's "screwball" film was actually the genesis of the 'Slanted! Enchanted!' musical that ran in New York this month

BY Megan LaPierrePublished Dec 19, 2022

The Pavement musical was definitely not on anyone's 2022 bingo card. But wait, there's more — Her Smell director Alex Ross Perry is also helming a movie about the band.

In a New Yorker profile by Hannah Seidlitz, Perry revealed that the Slanted! Enchanted! musical, which ran at the Sheen Center in New York this month, was actually inspired by the forthcoming film.

"Perry created the piece to feature in a screwball movie about the band which he is also directing, and which he has described variously as 'a semiotic experiment' and 'like throwing spaghetti at the wall,'" Seidlitz wrote. So now we know why, exactly, there was a musical theatre production about the band Pavement.

While details are scarce, the ouroboros movie tribute to the indie rock institution will reportedly take an unconventional approach, combining footage from the musical and its making with components of documentary and biopic. It's also endorsed by the band, apparently having begun with vague instruction from bandleader Stephen Malkmus — who reportedly said he "wasn't interested in hiring a documentary filmmaker." Seidlitz reported, "He wanted to hire a screenwriter. But he didn't want a screenplay."

After working with the band on their "Harness Your Hopes" video, Perry went ahead and decided to write something "legitimate, ridiculous, real, fake, idiotic, cliché, illogical," as he told the reporter. "You take the Todd Haynes Bob Dylan movie [I'm Not There], the Scorsese documentary, the Pennebaker documentary, and the movie Dylan himself directed that everyone hates [Renaldo and Clara], and put them all in a blender."

Needless to say, no release date has been set for the film yet, but it certainly sounds... wowee zowee?

Pavement went on tour this year for the first time since 2010, but Malkmus thinks recording new music would be "total cringe."

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