Keep On Keepin’ On, the story of jazz trumpeter Clark Terry and his protégé, pianist Justin Kauflin, is the lone music-oriented film to make the cut for the Best Documentary Feature Oscar.
The Academy’s Documentary Branch determined a shortlist of 15 films from which five nominees will be selected. The last two years have seen music-related films take home the trophy: Morgan Neville’s 20 Feet From Stardom and Malik Bendjelloul’s Searching for Sugar Man.
Keep On Keepin’ On, produced by Quincy Jones and Paula DuPre Persmen (The Cove, Chasing Ice), is the first film from director Al Hicks, a drummer and former student of Terry’s. The film played more than a dozen film festivals, winning two awards at the Tribeca Film Festival. Absolute Clay produced the film, which was released by the Weinstein Co.’s Radius division, the distributor of 20 Feet From Stardom.
The other 14 films and their production companies on the short list are:
Art and Craft, Purple Parrot Films
The Case Against 8, Day in Court?
Citizen Koch, Elsewhere Films
Citizen Four, Praxis Films
Finding Vivian Maier, Ravine Pictures
The Internet’s Own Boy, Luminant Media
Jodorowsky’s Dune, City Film?
The Kill Team, f/8 filmworks
Last Days in Vietnam, Moxie Firecracker Films
Life Itself, Kartemquin Films and Film Rites?
The Overnighters, Mile End Films West
The Salt of the Earth, Decia Films?
Tales of the Grim Sleeper, Lafayette Film
Virunga, Grain Media
The 87th Academy Awards nominations will be announced on Jan. 15.