Nick Broomfield and US-based Lafayette Films are behind a new documentary that uncovers the true story and legacy of Brian Jones, the founder and lost creative genius of The Rolling Stones.

The Stones and Brian Jones will premiere on BBC Two and BBC iPlayer in May as part of a new series of films for the flagship Arts strand, Arena.

Produced by Nick Broomfield, Shani Hinton, Marc Hoeferlin, Kyle Gibbon, it is a co-commission between BBC Arts and BBC Music and the commissioning editors are Mark Bell and Jan Younghusband.

As a 14 year-old schoolboy, Nick Broomfield met Brian Jones, by chance, on a train. Brian was at the height of his success, with the world at his feet, yet just six years later he would be dead.

The Stones and Brian Jones looks at the relationships and rivalries within The Rolling Stones in those formative years. It explores the iconoclastic freedom and exuberance of the 60s, a time of intergenerational conflict and sexual turmoil which reflects on where we are today.

Featuring revealing interviews with all the main players and unseen archive released for the first time, The Stones and Brian Jones explores the creative musical genius of Jones, key to the success of the band, and uncovers how the founder of what became the greatest rock’n’roll band in the world was left behind in the shadows of history.

Director Nick Broomfield says: “The Rolling Stones were a major influence in my formative years. Brian and Mick were heroes of the day, their rebellion and breaking of the rules were a great inspiration to us. Making this film was an opportunity for me to look at that formative growing-up time until the shock of Brian’s death in 1969, the darkest moment in the history of The Stones, when things changed.”

Mark Bell, Commissioning Editor, BBC Arts, says: “We’re proud to bring BBC viewers Nick’s powerful and personal film as part of the Arena strand; his new documentary sheds fresh light on a remarkable musician and his tumultuous times.”

For decades Broomfield has been among the foremost names in documentary ,more recently for My Father And Me, Marianne And Leonard: Words Of Love, Whitney: Can I Be Me, Tales Of The Grim Sleeper. Broomfield studied at the National Film School, under Professor Colin Young, who had a great influence on his work, encouraging participant observation, as well as introducing him to filmmaker Joan Churchill. Together Churchill and Broomfield made several films – Juvenile Liaison, Tattooed Tears, Soldier Girls, Lily Tomlin, as well as Aileen: Life And Death Of A Serial Killer.

Broomfield was originally influenced by the observational style of Fred Wiseman, Robert Leacock and Pennebaker, before moving on – largely by accident – to the more idiosyncratic style for which he is better known.


Pippa Considine

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