When You’re Strange

Writer/Director: Tom DiCillo
Cast: John Densmore, Robby Krieger, Ray Manzarek, Jim Morrison, Johnny Depp (narrator).
Awards: Grammy for Best Documentary, Audience Award; South by Southwest Music and Film Festival.
Festivals: Sundance, LA Film Festival, Woodstock, Berlin, Deauville, London, San Sebastian.
US Distribution: Rhino Entertainment and Abramorama.
Related Blog Posts: many, starting with The Land Of Fruits and Nuts and then jumping ahead to The Doors and running consecutively.

When You’re Strange TRAILER

Making this film has occupied my life for over 2 years. I include it as one of my favorites, my most personal and one of those I am most proud of. I have written about it in detail on the blog so you can plunge in if you want.

To this day I am still in awe over the fact that I actually met John Densmore, Robby Krieger and Ray Manzarek, and that I made a film about the incredible musical force they were so integrally part of. I came to have a great respect for all of them, as musicians and as human beings. I could not be prouder that they so enthusiastically support the film.

As for the one I didn’t meet; I think I got to know Mr. Morrison just a little bit through making this film and feel permanently altered as a result. His commitment to artistic freedom was absolute.

Doors Collector Interview

IndieMusic Review

Larry Kirwan of Black 47

Salli Stevenson’s Interview with Jim Morrison

4 thoughts on “WHEN YOU’RE STRANGE”

  1. My favorite DOORS docu yet! Wonderful job. I went into it blind and was like WHOA where did you get that actor, THAT GUY REALLY LOOKS LIKE HIM. Then a couple minutes in I caught on. It’s all him. No stand ins. Amazing footage from his childhood and teen years. Through the narration you really bring some interesting insights to the Doors and Morrison particularly. It is truthful but respectful (unlike Oliver Stone’s which i was embarrassed to still be a Doors fan after viewing all those years ago). I particularly like that sequence of intercut stills and footage of current events in the lulls in the live performance of The End. Brilliant. I liked Depp’s narration, but I kept wondering what yours would sound like – could not get it out of my head in fact – after reading somewhere that they played your reading at the festivals. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED by this reviewer! Liora P

  2. hi, Tom, I read somewhere that in an early screening of the film you did all the narration. Where is that now? Not understanding any of the legalities of all this, I still want to ask: Is there any way to have a listen to it?

    bes,t Liora

    1. Yes, that is true, Liora. It is somewhat of a painful story so I won’t go into it too much. The shortest version of it is that while we were editing the film the narration changed almost daily. So, in order to not have to have some voice over person come in every day I recorded the new narration myself. By the time we went to Sundance we had not gotten anyone to do the narration so we left my voice in. Apparently, this was very disturbing to some people.

      No, this narration is not available to listen to. All I can say is that Johnny Depp’s narration followed mine to the word, and also in time and inflection.

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