Paul Simon’s historic Graceland album sold millions of copies and united cultures, yet divided world opinion on the boundaries of art, politics, and commerce. On the occasion of the twenty-fifth anniversary of _Graceland_’s release, Simon returns to South Africa for a reunion concert that unearths the turbulent birth of the album. Despite its huge success as a popular fusion of American and African musical styles, Graceland spawned intense political crossfire. Simon was accused of breaking the United Nations’ cultural boycott of South Africa, which was designed to end apartheid.
Renowned filmmaker Joe Berlinger brilliantly intertwines both sides of a complex story as Simon revisits old ghosts and gains insights on his own musical journey. With the compelling perceptions of anti-apartheid activists and music legends such as Quincy Jones, Harry Belafonte, Paul McCartney, and David Byrne, Under African Skies is both a buoyant chronicle of unparalleled artistic achievement and a profound rumination on the role of the artist in society. –Sundance Film Festival
Oscar-nominated Joseph “Joe” Berlinger (born October 30, 1961) is an American documentary film-maker who, in collaboration with Bruce Sinofsky, has created such films as Paradise Lost about the West Memphis 3, Brother’s Keeper, Some Kind of Monster, and Crude.
In collaboration with journalist Greg Milner, Berlinger has also written a book called Metallica: This Monster Lives, which is about his journey from making the poorly received Blair Witch 2 to creating Some Kind of Monster with Metallica, one of the world’s most famous metal bands.
Berlinger has also worked on TV series such as Homicide: Life on the Street, D.C. and FanClub.
Berlinger is best known for the breakthrough film series “Paradise Lost,” which documents the murder trial and the subsequent legal battles of three teenagers wrongfully convicted of murder. The community of West Memphis, Arkansas believed that the three teenagers (known as the West Memphis Three) murdered three eight… read more