It's been Kurt Cobain revival season across the media as “Montage of Heck” – the new documentary by director Brett Morgen about the former Nirvana frontman – has been making the rounds on the festival circuit in preparation for it's theatrical debut this Friday, and premiere on HBO next week.
Throughout the film's kick-off tour, one figure has lurked at the front of everyone's mind, but has maintained a dignified silence on the topic of: the tragic figure of the whole story, Cobain's daughter, Frances Bean.
It's not shocking that the daughter of the fallen idol would be a supporter of the film; she is listed as its Executive Producer, having facilitated the film's access to the vast trove of diaries, art work and recordings Kurt left behind. But despite her involvement, the younger Cobain has not spoken out publicly about the film, until last night.
As director Brett Morgen concluded his remarks introducing the premiere screening of the film at Hollywood's Egyptian Theater, he was visibly startled when a person approached the podium and told him that Cobain wanted to say a few words before the lights fell. With Frances Bean and her mother Courtney Love in the audience, the two had been the subjects of interest as the crowd settled into their seats, but few expected to hear from either.
A diminutive figure clad in the all-black nouveau goth look she has become known for her in brief flashes of public exposure, Cobain took the podium and told the crowd that she had thought she would only be able to see the film once, but this would mark her sixth viewing of it. She attributed that to the artistic accomplishment of director Morgen in crafting such a beautiful film that truly reflected her father's work.
A lump came to every throat in the house when she then said, “I didn't know Kurt, but” she continued, “I think he would have been very proud of this film.”
At the party after the screening, the good will continued, despite the exceptionally dark nature of the material just seen. Although Frances and Love have engaged in public Twitter feuds and have been estranged over the years, they sat side by side in a corner until nearly midnight, talking with friends in a visibly animated, passionate manner that evoked the spirit of the grunge god who loomed over the night.
Frances Bean Cobain after the Tuesday night premiere:
– Frances Bean Cobain (@alka_seltzer666) April 22, 2015