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New Jerry Garcia documentary offers rare glimpse behind legend

Doc features never-before-seen footage

Jerry Garcia Music Arts and Malcolm Leo Productions partner to produce a new feature-length documentary about Jerry Garcia with never-before-seen footage of the private thoughts and reflections of the man behind the legend. The immersive film experience focuses on the creative spirit of Garcia. Jerry Garcia, Artist is a documentary based on a 1987 interview directed by Leo and filmed at Front Street Studio in San Rafael, California, by the Academy Award-winning cinematographer Russell Carpenter. It features Garcia speaking in his own voice directly to his audience about his music and art. Garcia’s family is co-producing the documentary and has contributed visual art and music to the project. It includes a charitable component that will benefit the Jerry Garcia Foundation as well as a charity of the co-producer’s choice.

“We envision an uplifting, immersive experience focused on my father’s art and music,” states Keelin Garcia, Jerry Garcia’s daughter, co-producer of the project and president of Jerry Garcia Music Arts. “The story is authentic. My father narrates the film in his own words, directly to the audience.”

The documentary captures Garcia at a peak moment as he eloquently reflects about the life he lived and the music he loved to make. He was unabashedly open to a wide array of subjects, offering a “nothing-off-limits” interview. The documentary provides a journey into Garcia’s artistic world through his personal musings, drawings and insights, including unpublished rare family photos and home movies and newly discovered performances.

Producer and director Leo and producer Dean Loring Gelfand — founder of three of music entertainment’s merchandise and licensing agencies — have been combining their special talents rooted in the music industry through their work with Malcolm Leo Productions and, more recently, MELLOWDEE. The Jerry Garcia venture is a natural fit.

“This project is a labor of love for all involved,” said Leo. “And it is the fulfillment of a promise I made to Jerry long ago to do something special with the footage. The film will honor one of the country’s most beloved musical heroes and cultural icons.”

No release date or distribution channels have been announced as of press time.