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“They’re the most influential of bands."

By Hayden Wright

Acclaimed auteur Todd Haynes (CarolFar From Heaven) will direct a Velvet Underground documentary that explores the band’s early beginnings and their rise to define an aesthetic in the 1960s and beyond. The Velvet Goldmine director announced the film at the Locarno Film Festival in Locarno, Switzerland, where he opened up about his admiration for the Velvet Underground.

Related: Hear an Unearthed 1969 Live Version of the Velvet Underground’s ‘I’m Waiting for the Man’

“They’re the most influential of bands – as Brian Eno said, everybody who bought [‘Velvet Underground & Nico’] started a band,” Haynes said.

Haynes says his film will explore how the Underground “[came] out of a truly experimental cross-section of film, contemporary art, and a rejection of mainstream consumer culture at a very rich and fertile time of the 1960s in New York City.”

The director added that the Velvet Underground’s cultural significance can’t be quantified in album sales or commercial metrics—since they influenced a generation of musicians, according to Variety. “Their influence has nothing to do with sales or visibility or the ways we portion ideas of success,” he said.

Haynes also previously directed the experimental Bob Dylan film I’m Not There and a stop-motion Karen Carpenter documentary, Superstar.

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