Musician and activist Fela Kuti (1938–1997), credited with creating the musical movement Afrobeat, rose to international stardom. He turned his prominence into a political forum to oppose the Nigerian dictatorship, and after developing AIDS, he helped to raise awareness of the disease's devastating presence in Africa. Directed by Academy Award winner Alex Gibney and inspired by the Bill T. Jones-directed Broadway hit FELA!, this documentary combines behind-the-scenes shots from the stage show, interviews with Kuti’s family and contemporaries, and riveting archival performance footage. Featuring commentary by Bill T. Jones, Sir Paul McCartney, Ahmir Khalib “Questlove” Thompson, and many others.
“The film's challenge lies in its difficult hero: an enormously talented and charismatic man who was also troubled, stubborn, and unpredictable.” —Indiewire.com
“If ever a show's name deserved the all-caps, exclamation mark treatment, FELA! is it. Both the man and the multiple-Tony Award-winning musical about him are larger than life, spectacles equally spiritual, sensual and cerebral. A riot of color and sound, a feast that defies your senses to take in!” —Houston Press review of FELA! at Jones Hall, 2012