VH1 Profiles Woodstock’s 40th Anniversary

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We’ve examined the impact of the sexual revolution, and turned it up to 11 with an investigation into heavy metal. We’ve also checked out the toll taken by The Drug Years. VH1′s Rock Doc series burrows into pop culture subjects and creates fun, insightful portraits. Up next? Our take on the women of L.A.’s infamous Sunset Strip (the premiere is April 4). And we’re also turning the cameras towards Woodstock; the iconic rock festival celebrates its 40th anniversary this August.

“Now, 40 years after that historic moment, VH1 Rock Docs and History have joined forces for a unique television collaboration: the definitive two-hour documentary, “Woodstock: 40 Years Later” (working title), which will premiere this August on VH1, History and VH1 Classic. Directed by two-time Academy Award winning filmmaker Barbara Kopple and Executive Produced by Michael Lang, the original festival organizer, the film examines Woodstock from the perspectives of not only the musicians who graced the stage, but the fans who gathered in mass, the concert promoters who risked everything and countless others whose unique experiences help paint a tapestry of Woodstock that hasn’t been seen in recent years”

If you’ve got video footage or great first-hand stories about the concert, we want to speak with you. Contact the producers.

More about the show after the jump.

“Woodstock: 40 Years Later” explores the frenzied days leading up to and throughout the festival, from how the planners scrambled to find a concert site and the traffic jams that shut down the New York State thruway to the infamously bad “brown acid,” the thunderous rain and mud and, of course, the music. Weaving together first-hand accounts with rare archival images and an iconic soundtrack, the documentary allows those who were there a chance to relive the experience and gives an entirely new generation an opportunity to feel the magic of that time.

The film will also take an important look at Woodstock’s legacy through the eyes of today’s musicians and activists examining why Woodstock and all it symbolizes is still relevant in today’s culture.

  1. Jay says:

    The next time you decide to put on a classic wide-screen movie like Woodstock, write 1,000 times on your blackboard, “I Will NEVER Again Butcher a Movie Like Woodstock By Using ‘Pan-and-Scan’ As Its Format!” Pan-and-Scan SUCKS-SUCKS-SUCKS, and absolutely ruins a beautiful, full-frame, split-screen movie like Woodstock. For that matter, write your blackboard penance for your butchery of the movie “Heavy Metal”, too.

  2. Michael says:

    It would be interesting to see some more unseen performance footage. We’ve had quite a bit of footge available over the years with the Movie, Woodstock – Lost performances (VHS), Woodstock Diaries (showtime 1994), and now the 40th anniversary Movie. Bother Amazon and Target each have their own extra DVD with a few more clips. Oh yeah, there was also the Woodstock Minute clips on MTV in the late 80′s. I won’t even get into the couple of hours of raw footage in color and black and white that’s been circulating on bootleg VHS & DVD, or the 20+ disc set of audio fans have put together to try and reconstruct this event from soundboard and audience recordings.

    To this day no one seems to know who was the guy on stage during the Grateful Dead’s performance of “Turn On Your Love Light”. Not even people in the band. This footage is now available on the new DVD bonus disc. Has this man ever stepped forward to say who he was, or how he made it to the stage? You can tell that he took some really good psychedelics that night. (probably not that brown acid.) Is there any footage of Abbie Hoffman being hit with Pete Townshend’s guitar during the middile of The Who’s performance of Tommy? These are good questions a lot of rock fans would love to know.

    I’m looking forward to hopefully seeing some more New footage that hasn’t been seen yet. They found 8 hours of footage to use on the new DVD and BluRay discs. I’m sure there’s got to be a few more good clips of the Jefferson Airplane or Janis Joplin Sets.

    Yes, I know that the documentary will probably focus a lot on people who were there, people who wanted to be there, people who weren’t born yet who wished they were alive to be there………… But it would be nice to see more actual concert footage considering so many of the bands have had such a huge impact on the evolution of Rock Music. Just my 2 cents. – Michael

  3. Michael says:

    It would be interesting to see some more unseen performance footage. We’ve had quite a bit of footage available over the years with the Movie, Woodstock – Lost performances (VHS), Woodstock Diaries (showtime 1994), and now the 40th anniversary Movie. Bother Amazon and Target each have their own extra DVD with a few more clips. Oh yeah, there was also the Woodstock Minute clips on MTV in the late 80′s. I won’t even get into the couple of hours of raw footage in color and black and white that’s been circulating on bootleg VHS & DVD, or the 20+ disc set of audio fans have put together to try to reconstruct this event from soundboard and audience recordings.

    To this day no one seems to know who was the guy on stage during the Grateful Dead’s performance of “Turn On Your Love Light”. Not even people in the band. This footage is now available on the new DVD bonus disc. Has this man ever stepped forward to say who he was, or how he made it to the stage? You can tell that he took some really good psychedelics that night. (probably not that brown acid.) Is there any footage of Abbie Hoffman being hit with Pete Townshend’s guitar during the middle of The Who’s performance of Tommy? These are good questions a lot of rock fans would love to know.

    I’m looking forward to hopefully seeing some more New footage that hasn’t been seen yet. They found 8 hours of footage to use on the new DVD and BluRay discs. I’m sure there’s got to be a few more good clips of the Jefferson Airplane or Janis Joplin Sets.

    Yes, I know that the documentary will probably focus a lot on people who were there, people who wanted to be there, people who weren’t born yet who wished they were alive to be there………… But it would be nice to see more actual concert footage considering so many of the bands have had such a huge impact on the evolution of Rock Music. Just my 2 cents. – Michael

  4. Josh says:

    This was a great concert.
    Saw it on Vh1 about 2 weeks ago.
    “An announcement,the brown acid going around is not very good,just be advised” lol
    the performances were just spot on
    please air it again Vh1!

  5. Tish says:

    A fantastic 2 hrs. ruined at the end by an analogy to obamas inaguration. The idiot is the anithesis of everything we stood for…

  6. Dave Mowrey says:

    Woodstock: 40 Years Later”
    This was a fantastic, excellent documentary, EXCEPT…. for one thing… when at the end the film there is a clip of Obama and an %(((@@+`*+$&!)^ ociation of Woodstock basically prepared us for Obama. I shut the Film off. It is not an issue of if you like Obama or not, it is an issue of the films attempts to %(((@@+`*+$&!)^ ociate Obama with this great American event. I was disappointed to say the least!

  7. Barry Hansen says:

    caught some of your show on TV last pm. Saw some photos by a canadian journalist who was there and saw myself sitting on a small dock at the lake. almost fell out of my chair. how can can I get a copy of this pic?

  8. Dee Jaye says:

    When are you going to air
    Woodstock: Then & Now
    again?

  9. Rachel says:

    Will you eventually be able to buy Woodstock: Now & Then? It’s such an awesome documentery…despite the ending.

  10. Dave says:

    Unfortiunately missed the August 30 airng and was wondering if it will be rebroadcast, or if the video will be released to purchase?

  11. Randall says:

    Does someone know the name of the song that plays near the end of Woodstock Now and Then? The music starts when the individuals in the movie are viewing the Woodstock memorabilia/museum.

  12. Karen says:

    Does anyone know if Woodstock: Now & Then was ever released for purchase?

  13. Paul Hardt says:

    How can I obtain a print of your VH1 documentary about Woodstock from August, 2009?

  14. Billy D says:

    I absolutely could not peel myself away from this incredible historic presentation of Woodstock, with so many things that happened before, during, and after that many people don’t know.

    I have to admit though, regardless of your view on politics, what the heck were the writers/directors/producers thinking by ending the movie as if everyone who believed in the causes influencing Woodstock now believes that Obama is the reincarnation, or second coming of Woodstock. It didn’t work with Woodstock II, and it certainly won’t work with the only Woodstock that really means anything.

    If I had anything in my stomach I would have blown it all over the television. I was disgusted with the “artistic license” – if you could call it that – that was taken. I also am sure that many who went feel that they were violated after what was nonstop amazing. You have come up with the ultimate way to encourage changing channels – add something that happened 40 years later and treat it as if it was as important as the issues of 1968 and 1969. Somehow all of our troops in Vietnam, the deaths at Kent State University (10 miles from my house), and the freedom and non-violence being such strong movements would vehemently disagree.

    Please don’t ever do this again. It is a travesty and an affront to all of those who care. If you want to do a story on the sitting president, do it, but think before you act. There has been a lot of change in 40 years, and unfortunately it has not all been for the good.

    Regardless of poor taste I still would like to own a copy of this tremendous documentary. Thank you for having this pulpit to preach from.