World premiere for Michael Hutchence documentary at Tribeca

‘Mystify: Michael Hutchence’

Richard Lowenstein’s feature documentary on Michael Hutchence will have its world premiere at the 18th edition of the Tribeca Film Festival, which runs from April 24 to May 5.

Produced by Lowenstein, Maya Gnyp and John Battsek for Ghost Pictures and Passion Pictures, Mystify: Michael Hutchence will screen in the documentary competition for best documentary feature, cinematography and editing.

Co-funded by Screen Australia, the film is described as an intimate look at the life of the INXS lead singer through his many loves and demons, featuring Kylie Minogue and Helena Christensen.

Madman Entertainment is the Australian distributor and Dogwoof is handling international sales. The ABC and BBC pre-bought the film.

Lowenstein tells IF the doc features live music from INXS and Max Q, Hutchence’s only completed solo album which was a collaboration with Ollie Olsen, remixed for Atmos, plus archival footage which had been in his attic, undiscovered, for 35 years.

The competition section features 12 documentaries, 10 US narratives and 10 international narratives. The films in competition will compete for cash prizes totaling $165,000.

For the seventh year, the jury-selected Nora Ephron Award will give $25,000 to the woman filmmaker in this year’s program who embodies the spirit and boldness of the late, pioneering Ephron.

The festival will open at New York’s Apollo Theatre with the world premiere of Academy Award-winning director Roger Ross Williams’ documentary The Apollo from HBO Documentary Films.

Half of the titles selected in the three competition sections are directed by women and 40 per cent of the feature films have one or more women directors while 29 per cent of the feature films are directed by people of colour and 13 per cent are by individuals who identify as LGBTQIA. The 2019 festival was programmed from more than 9,295 submissions.


17 Blocks. Directed by Davy Rothbart, written by Jennifer Tiexiera. Produced by Alex Turtletaub, Michael B. Clark, Marc Turtletaub, Rachel Dengiz, Davy Rothbart. (USA)
Dog Doc, directed by Cindy Meehl. Produced by Alice Henty, Cindy Meehl. (USA)
For They Know Not What They Do, directed by Daniel Karslake, written by Nancy Kennedy, Daniel Karslake. Produced by Daniel Karslake, Sheri Heitker, Barbara Simon. (USA)
Leftover Women, directed, written, and produced by ShoshShlam, HillaMedalia. (Israel)
Mystify: Michael Hutchence, directed and written by Richard Lowenstein. Produced by Maya Gnyp, John Battsek, Sue Murray, Mark Fennessy, Richard Lowenstein, Lynn-Maree Milburn, Andrew de Groot. (Australia)
Our Time Machine, directed by Yang Sun, S. Leo Chiang, written by S. Leo Chiang, Bob Lee. Produced by S. Leo Chiang, Yang Sun. (China)
Recorder: The Marion Stokes Project, directed by Matt Wolf. Produced by Kyle Martin, Andrew Kortschak, Walter Kortschak. (USA)
Rewind, directed by Sasha Joseph Neulinger. Produced by Thomas Winston. (USA)
Scheme Birds, directed and written by Ellen Fiske, EllinorHallin. Produced by Mario Adamson, Ruth Reid. (Scotland, Sweden)
Seahorse, directed and written by Jeanie Finlay. Produced by Andrea Cornwell, Jeanie Finlay. (UK)
, directed by Lesley Chilcott. Produced by Louise Runge, Lesley Chilcott, Wolfgang Knöpfler. (USA, Costa Rica, Tonga)
A Woman’s Work: The NFL’s Cheerleader Problem, directed by Yu Gu, written by Elizabeth Ai. Produced by Yu Gu, Elizabeth Ai. (USA, UK)

For the full program go here