David Byrne and Jonathan Demme Talk Stop Making Sense 30 Years Later

Slate's Culture Blog
Aug. 18 2014 5:03 PM

David Byrne and Jonathan Demme Talk Stop Making Sense 30 Years Later

stopmakingsense
David Byrne in Stop Making Sense.

Photo by Palm Pictures - © 1984

This summer marks the 30th anniversary of Stop Making Sense, the Jonathan Demme–directed Talking Heads concert film that captured the band at the height of its power as a live act. Filmed over three nights at the Pantages Theatre in Los Angeles, the movie slowly builds as more and more performers join David Byrne on stage.* It remains one of the most influential and beloved concert films ever made.

In a recent interview with Janet Maslin at the Jacob Burns Film Center, director Jonathan Demme and star David Byrne discussed how their partnership came about, how the film was conceived, and why the movie feels so joyful. You can watch clips from that interview exclusively below.

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How the movie came together:

Why the movie feels so joyful:

Do yourself a favor and watch this film again. This short clip will get you started:

*Correction, Aug. 19, 2014: This article originally suggested that the movie was filmed at the Greek Theatre. It was filmed at the Pantages Theatre.

Chris Wade is a video and podcast producer for Slate and occasional contributor to Brow Beat. Follow him on Twitter.

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