SLAPSHOT Documentary Co-Director Speaks

"Chip On My Shoulder", the documentary of the Boston hardcore band SLAPSHOT produced by Killswitch Productions and Taang! Records, is being released. It will premier at the Independent Film Festival of Boston tonight (Friday, April 24) at 9:45 p.m. at the Brattle Theater in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

"Chip on My Shoulder" follows the members of SLAPSHOT through their turbulent twenty-year history, documenting every up and down along the way. It is an unflinching look into the life of a band that was seemingly destined to implode from its very inception.

"Chip on My Shoulder" is a story of friendship and betrayal, loss and redemption, self-destruction and sacrifice. Born in the streets and underground music halls of Boston, SLAPSHOT went on to inspire millions worldwide while simultaneously tearing a group of friends apart.

Through hundreds of hours of the band's own archival footage, rare images, and revealing present-day interviews comes the true story of one of the most influential hardcore bands of all time. It is a unique look at the ugly side of music — a side that few people have a chance to see. It is what happens when sanity and stability are thrown to the wind in pursuit of passion, regardless of how destructive that passion may be and regardless of how it will forever change the trajectory of people's lives.

Co-director Ian McFarland tells "From the start, we wanted to do a documentary film rather than a fan DVD that only the fans would appreciate. I thought that the band had this interesting story that would appeal to a much broader audience if presented in the right way.

"When I approached the band about the idea, they really didn't think that their story was very interesting and they didn't think that anyone would want to hear it other than fans. Regardless, they agreed to let me give it a shot. They quickly realized that I was not out to tell just the history of the band but rather was interested in looking at the opposing personalities of drummer Mark McKay and singer Jack 'Choke' Kelly over their 30-year history.

"The biggest challenge was to try to convey to the band what we wanted to do. It's always really hard to get across the true tone and feel of a film before someone can see it. Plus, it really did not help matters too much that these guys just really don't take the band or themselves seriously and never have.

"Yes, the band started with a mission to put the Boston hardcore scene back on the map but that was as far as it went. I don't think that they ever dreamed that they would be together 30 years later, let alone still be close friends. And in looking at the footage of when they were teenagers and being around them today, they really have not changed too much."


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