A documentary about John Lennon's transformation into an antiwar activist has started preproduction, and aims to reach theaters next year, according to distributor Lions Gate Films.

A documentary about John Lennon's transformation into an antiwar activist has started preproduction, and aims to reach theaters next year, according to distributor Lions Gate Films.

The release of "The U.S. vs. John Lennon" will coincide with the 30th anniversary of the former Beatle being granted permanent residency in the United States despite the best efforts of the U.S. government.

The film, which will center on Lennon's life from 1966-76, has received support and cooperation from the artist's widow, Yoko Ono. It will be cowritten, directed and produced by David Leaf ("Beautiful Dreamer: Brian Wilson and the Story of Smile") and John Scheinfeld (the recently completed "Who Is Harry Nilsson (and Why Is Everybody Talkin' About Him)?").

Lions Gate will premiere another music documentary, "Leonard Cohen I'm Your Man," next week at the Toronto International Film Festival.

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