Jonathan Demme passed away at the age of 73 after a battle with esophageal cancer. While the legendary director will no doubt be remembered for his Oscar-winning and iconic film Silence of the Lambs, Demme was also one of the most gifted music documentarians to ever film a stage.
Demme’s unique style — frequently favoring shots that showed the artist in full rather than divorcing them from their instruments via close-ups — worked perfectly to capture the expressive body language and wild gyrations of David Bryne in the classic Talking Heads’ concert film Stop Making Sense. And that film alone could explain why everyone from Neil Young to Justin Timberlake reached out to Demme to lay their shows down on celluloid. While countless filmmakers and actors have taken to social media to publicly mourn the loss of such a talent, Demme’s unique filmography meant that his death could not go unremarked upon in the musical sphere as well.
First off, plenty of people shared shots of Stop Making Sense to commemorate the late filmmaker.
And his other numerous contributions to the intersection of music and film:
Outside of the music press and documentary fans, however, there were quite a few musicians who felt the need to reflect on Demme’s passing.
One thing’s clear. That passing of Jonathan Demme is as big a loss for the music industry as it is for Hollywood.