For No Good Reason
The wild life, and wilder art, of Ralph Steadman.
Even if a screening is sold out, tickets are often available 30 minutes before the start of the film at the box office at each venue.
- Director Charlie Paul
- Producer Lucy Paul
- Featuring Johnny Depp, Richard E Grant, Terry Gilliam
- UK 2012
- 89 mins
- Production company Itch Film Ltd
Ralph Steadman is most frequently celebrated for his brilliant illustrations accompanying the writings of Hunter S Thompson, and their collaborations defined the Gonzo school of journalism that emerged to pick at the scabs of the American establishment during the turbulent eras of Vietnam and Nixon. Among his many achievements, Steadman has drawn political and satirical work informed by a deep social conscience, illustrated classics such as Alice in Wonderland and Animal Farm, printed etchings on writers from Shakespeare to Burroughs, and published books on the lives of Sigmund Freud, Leonardo da Vinci and God. Charlie Paul’s intimate documentary portrait, filmed over 15 years, presents Steadman as a driven artist with a voracious creative instinct. Johnny Depp appears at Steadman’s home studio to observe his fascinating working process, there are tributes from key collaborators and acolytes, rare footage from the Gonzo years and beyond, and some of the iconic work is animated for the first time.
Fifteen years ago I took a trip to Old Loose Court in Kent to meet one of the greatest artistic influences in my life. That trip started me on a journey that has profoundly affected the way I see the world and the way in which I work. I found the perfect collaborator and companion to create the film I wanted to make. This film is the culmination of my roots as a punk, art student, photographer and filmmaker in a multi-layered narrative, spun almost entirely from a single palette; the life and art of Ralph Steadman. The process of making this film has been a privilege; to have intimate access to Ralph’s library of art, friends and collaborators, to work with talented musicians, the weeks of difficult motion-control shoots, film utilising many different formats of which some are now obsolete, edit, colour-grade, sound-scape creation and composite with the UK’s industry best, has allowed me to become the artist I hoped to be. Thank you, Ralph.
Born in 1961 in London, he attended Byam Shaw School of Art in 1986-1989, and began his career as an animator. A director of commercials and music videos in London for the past twenty years, he has had his work internationally recognised with over thirty advertising awards, including those given by D&AD, Clio, Creative Circle, BTAA and Rank Cinema. He has also for many years worked with a number of artists, filming their work as it is created; from blank canvas to finished painting, and several of these films were collated for the BAFTA-nominated Channel 4 series Inside Art. The flow of commercial work through his production company Itch Film has now enabled him to realise his long-term ambition to create a feature film about his artistic hero Ralph Steadman.
2012 For No Good Reason [doc]; Cherrywood Cannon [s]