Fathom Events Premieres World War II Documentary The Cold Blue, From Acclaimed Filmmaker Erik Nelson, With a Special One-Night Event in Cinemas Worldwide
The Film Features Recently Discovered, Remastered Footage From Golden Age Director William Wyler, Shot During WWII Combat Missions
DENVER – April 3, 2019 – Fathom Events has teamed with Spencer Proffer’s Meteor 17 to bring acclaimed filmmaker Erik Nelson’s new documentary The Cold Blue, chronicling the heroic struggles of the U.S. Eighth Air Force during World War II, to the big screen on May 23 only. The new film, from Paul G. Allen’s Vulcan Productions and Creative Differences, was constructed using recently discovered and meticulously restored raw color footage from the WWII-era documentary Memphis Belle: A Story of a Flying Fortress, directed by the legendary director William Wyler and filmed aboard B17s during combat air missions. A meditation on youth, war and trauma, The Cold Blue is a tribute to one of the world’s greatest filmmakers, his cameraman Harold Tannenbaum – who perished in combat while filming – and the men of the Eighth Air Force, who flew mission after lethal mission during the Air War.
Fathom Events will exclusively premiere The Cold Blue in cinemas across the globe on Thursday, May 23 at 7:30 p.m. local time. Tickets for U.S. screenings can be purchased beginning April 5 at www.FathomEvents.com and participating theater box offices. International cinema locations and ticket-on-sale dates will be announced at a later date.
The Cold Blue Fathom event is produced by Spencer Proffer of Meteor 17. The documentary, produced by Vulcan Productions and Creative Differences in association with HBO Documentary Films, was made with the full cooperation of the Wyler Estate and Catherine Wyler. Produced by Peter Hankoff; executive produced by Paul G. Allen, Carole Tomko, Rocky Collins, Catherine Wyler, Clark Bunting and Dave Harding; directed and produced by Erik Nelson.
“This project was a labor of love that has been three years in the making, from the discovery of William Wyler’s original footage to working closely with the National Archives to restore it frame by frame,” said The Cold Blue director Erik Nelson. “We’re excited to finally share this special project with audiences across the United States, and to celebrate the last of the best — the men who risked their lives to save the world 75 years ago.”
"My father would be amazed and delighted that the aerial footage he and his camera crew shot in such terrifying conditions is having a new life and new audiences 75 years later,” said The Cold Blue executive producer Catherine Wyler. “Erik Nelson’s new work captures the danger and the courage required of our airmen in the battle over Europe.”
The film features interviews with nine of these surviving veterans, whose voices narrate the harrowing world that Wyler and his cameramen captured in the summer of 1943. The immersive theatrical experience also includes an original orchestral score from celebrated musician and composer Richard Thompson (Grizzly Man), and sound design by David Hughes (Black Panther).
“The Cold Blue is a first-of-its-kind documentary, which reinvents the visionary work of one of our greatest American directors to create an entirely new film,” said Fathom Events CEO Ray Nutt. “Fathom is proud to give this documentary a showcase fit for its technical feats, historical importance and beautiful storytelling — on big screens worldwide.”
For artwork/photos related to The Cold Blue, visit the Fathom Events press site.
About Fathom Events
Fathom Events is the leading event cinema distributor with theater locations in all top 100 DMAs® (Designated Market Areas) and ranks as one of the largest overall theater content distributors. Owned by AMC Entertainment Inc. (NYSE: AMC); Cinemark Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: CNK); and Regal, a subsidiary of the Cineworld Group (LSE: CINE.L), Fathom Events offers a variety of unique entertainment events in movie theaters such as live performances of the Metropolitan Opera, top Broadway stage productions, major sporting events, epic concerts, the yearlong TCM Big Screen Classics series, inspirational events and popular anime franchises. Fathom Events takes audiences behind the scenes for unique extras including audience Q&As, backstage footage and interviews with cast and crew, creating the ultimate VIP experience. Fathom Events’ live Digital Broadcast Network (“DBN”) is the largest cinema broadcast network in North America, bringing live and pre-recorded events to 1,010 locations and 1,628 screens in 182 DMAs. The company also provides corporations a compelling national footprint for hosting employee meetings, customer rewards events and new product launches. For more information, visit www.FathomEvents.com.
About Meteor 17 & Spencer Proffer
Headquartered in Los Angeles, this convergence and production venture is helmed by innovative media and music producer, Spencer Proffer. M17 is producing and is developing an ambitious slate of projects across music, TV, film, Internet, live event, and other platforms, integrating brand marketing and music as organic components. M17 is a full service organization that actively participates from conception and architecture through all phases of deal making, production, marketing and distribution entities highlighted on www.meteor17.com.
About Vulcan Productions
Vulcan Productions is dedicated to the power of storytelling. The company produces content and large-scale campaigns that entertain, inspire and activate audiences around the world's toughest challenges. Its films, television series and digital content spark ideas and turn action into measurable impact. Founded by Paul G. Allen and Jody Allen, Vulcan Productions creates content across all formats and genres, and spotlights their vision for impact in biodiversity, science, climate, technology, current social issues, history and the arts. The company also uses cutting edge technology to create unique experiences for its audiences, incorporating virtual, mixed and augmented reality. The team’s award-winning and critically-acclaimed projects include Ghost Fleet, Reason I Jump, Oliver Sacks, X-Ray Fashion, The Cold Blue, The Memphis Belle: A Story of a Flying Fortress – The Restoration, Ballet Now, Going to War, USS Indianapolis: The Final Chapter, STEP, The Ivory Game, Unseen Enemy, Racing Extinction, News & Documentary Emmy Nominee Naledi: A Baby Elephant’s Tale, News & Documentary Emmy winner and Academy Award®-nominated Body Team 12, Mind of a Giant, We the Economy, We the Voters, Ocean Warriors, #ISurvivedEbola, and Girl Rising. For information on Vulcan Productions, visit www.vulcanproductions.com.
About Creative Differences
Creative Differences has produced an array of notable feature documentaries, including Werner Herzog’s Grizzly Man (2005), Herzog’s Oscar nominated Encounters At The World (2008) and the 2011 3D box office hit Cave Of Forgotten Dreams. Company founder Erik Nelson has also produced and directed such films as the 2008 biography of writer Harlan Ellison, Dreams With Sharp Teeth, as well as the 2012 animated feature Dinotasia and 2017’s A Gray State. For more information on Creative Differences, please visit http://cdtvfilms.com.
About HBO Documentary Films
HBO Documentary Films offers a full spectrum of stellar, non-fiction programming by acclaimed documentary filmmakers. Recent films include such critically praised documentaries as LEAVING NEVERLAND, THE INVENTOR: OUT FOR BLOOD IN SILICON VALLEY, THE CASE AGAINST ADNAN SYED, THE PRICE OF EVERYTHING, SAY HER NAME: THE LIFE AND DEATH OF SANDRA BLAND, JANE FONDA IN FIVE ACTS, THE SENTENCE and ROBIN WILLIAMS: COME INSIDE MY MIND, among others. Upcoming projects include THE APOLLO, I LOVE YOU, NOW DIE and the series AXIOS. HBO’s powerful, uncompromising documentary programming has won virtually every award within the genre including 59 Primetime Emmys®, 73 News & Documentary Emmys, 52 George Foster Peabody Awards and 30 Academy Awards®. www.hbo.com/documentaries/
Jessica Nelson / Katherine Schwappach