The Damned: Don’t You Wish That We Were Dead

Never mind the Sex Pistols… here’s The Damned!

Out on:Download 22nd May 2017
Blu-Ray 29th May 2017
DVD 29th May 2017

Fast sell:

A rip-roaring, hellraising account of one of the first and greatest punk bands, The Damned, who ripped up the 70s music scene, fell apart in chaos, reformed and are still touring today 40 years strong! This joins Lemmy, The Filth and the Fury and Anvil as a gleefully riotous, must watch rock-doc!

From the co-director of Lemmy, featuring Chrissie Hynde, Mick Jones, Lemmy, and members of Pink Floyd, Black Flag, Guns 'N' Roses, Sex Pistols, Fugazi, Blondie, The Buzzcocks and many more!

Key talent:

David Vanian (lead singer, The Damned)
Captain Sensible (guitar/vocals, The Damned)
Rat Scabies (drummer, The Damned)
Lemmy (Motorhead)
Mick Jones (The Clash)
Steve Diggle (The Buzzcocks)
Chrissie Hynde (The Pretenders)
Chris Stein and Clem Burke (Blondie)
Jon Moss (Culture Club)
Duff McKagan (Guns 'N' Roses)
Glen Matlock (Sex Pistols)
Nick Mason (Pink Floyd)
Ian MacKaye (Fugazi, Minor Threat)
Jesse Hughes (Eagles of Death Metal)
Dexter Holland (The Offspring)
Jack Grisham (T.S.O.L)
David Gahan (Depeche Mode)
Don Letts
Billy Idol

Wes Orshoski (Lemmy)


The story of the long-ignored pioneers of punk: The Damned.

The long-ignored pioneers of punk, The Damned started out as trailblazers on London's 70s punk rock scene, being the first British punk band to release a single, the immortal New Rose in 1976. They were the first of their band s genre to release an album, and the first to tour the United States, performing to sellout crowds, where they left a lasting musical legacy.

However the critical adoration lavished on contemporaries like The Clash and Sex Pistols always eluded them.

Shot around the globe over three years, the film charts the band's complex history and infighting. It captures the band on a world tour and follows its estranged former members striking out on their own anniversary tour.

We like it because:

“They came to party and they rocked the house!” Don Letts

The Sex Pistols might be more famous, and The Clash might have been taken more seriously, but there was no band on the planet during the late Seventies like British punks The Damned. Music that was faster and louder than anything that had gone before - as someone notes in the film, “if you wanted to drive someone stuck in the Seventies clear out of your house, you put on The Damned”. They not only released the very first punk record (with the single New Rose in 1976), they survived infighting, life on the road, audience projectiles, substance abuse and disease… but one thing they couldn’t cope with seemed to be unlikely mainstream success.

The documentary captures the raw, riotous energy of the band who on the surface were life of the party jokers, and underneath were canny musicians, with extensive footage of their early gigs (including performances of classic tracks Neat Neat Neat, Love Song and the glorious and timeless anthem Smash It Up), and speaks to band members now - the enigmatic Vanian, the irrepressible Sensible - as they reflect on their wild punk antics during a long and extraordinary career that inspired a whole generation of groups including Guns ‘n Roses and Depeche Mode.

With cameo appearances from the likes of Lemmy, Chrissie Hynde, Billy Idol, Dave Gahan and members of Blondie, Culture Club and The Stranglers, this is The Filth and The Fury meets Anvil with a dash of Spinal Tap (The Damned keep having to replace their bass players), an inspiring slice of nostalgia, a valuable record of the true birth of punk, and a warts and all, often hilarious portrait of a brilliantly talented, oft-neglected band.

Hot Quotes:

"Orshoski builds a solid case for the band's historic importance in this funny, fast-moving, fan-friendly documentary" The Hollywood Reporter

"The Damned's unpredictability only endeared them further to the diehard fan base, and it makes this documentary all the more entertaining" Variety

Editor's Notes:

A Deluxe 40th Anniversary Edition of The Damned’s seminal album ‘Damned Damned Damned’ is available now on:




Kaleidoscope Home Entertainment
Release date
29th May, 2017
Digital release
22nd May, 2017


Wes Orshoski