Eric Clapton: A Life in 12 Bars

Eric Clapton’s life and career will get the feature documentary treatment in Eric Clapton: A Life in 12 Bars. The team behind the film has unprecedented access to an archive of classic performance clips, on- and off-stage footage, photos, concert posters as well as the musician’s handwritten letters, drawings and diary entries.

The film will be directed by Lili Fini Zanuck, who helmed Rush. That 1991 crime drama was scored by Clapton and featured “Tears In Heaven.”

Zanuck co-produced the dramas Cocoon and Driving Miss Daisy with her husband, Richard D. Zanuck. Along with Clapton, Scooter Weintraub, John Beug and John Sykes, she was Executive Producer of Eric Clapton & Friends in Concert: A Benefit for the Crossroads Centre at Antigua.

In the press release for A Life in 12 Bars, Zanuck said Clapton’s “music is the foundation of our film. His commitment to the blues, its traditions and originators, is absolute from his earliest days. He was also forever restless in his search of a suitable vehicle to shape and grow his artistic voice, often bewildering fans and the media with sudden changes in musical direction, bands, songs, guitar style, tone and physical appearance.”

The documentary will also delve into his personal life, which is the film’s emotional spine, according to Zanuck. She said it follows Clapton’s traumatic childhood through the successes of his musical career, the death of his young son in 1991, and the personal happiness he found as a family man a decade later.

Zanuck concluded, “It is indeed a melancholic victory lap, full of nostalgic myth, but always musically potent, always looking to the future. Despite the fact that his path is strewn with tragedies, addiction and loss, he never fails to regain his bearings and continue to serve what he holds dearest: his music.”

The film will be edited by Chris King, known for his work on the documentaries Senna (2010) and Amy (2015). John Battsek of Passion Pictures will produce.

A release date was not announced.

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