Canadian rock legends Billy Talent have released the first episode of a multi-part short film today. Directed by award-winning Canadian director, Michael Maxxis, the film stars UFC fighters Rose Namajunas and Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone in a story set in a bleak dystopian desert. This first episode, Forgiveness I, features music from “Forgiveness I + II,” which the band dropped last week as a surprise and to great acclaim. The next chapter will release in early January.
Billy Talent collaborated with Maxxis on the story, which is inspired by songs that the band will be releasing over the course of the next few months, accompanied shortly there-after by the next chapter in the series.
Of the film, Billy Talent’s Ben Kowalewicz says “We are so proud of this film. The spark of this idea was inspired by our new music and developed with our amazingly talented friend Michael Maxxis. This will be unlike anything you’ve ever seen before from Billy Talent. We are so fortunate to have Rose and Cowboy be part of this. “They are both captivating and riveting. We couldn’t be happier having them be part of the world we created.”
Director Maxxis agrees, saying, “This project is the result of a progressively minded band wanting to do something different and with depth. Forgiveness is a story of apostasy and the unabated commitment to self-mastery. None of this would have been possible without Cowboy’s partnership. He did everything from making weapons, to casting, getting horses, the fight choreography, his own stunts, and providing accommodations for cast and crew at his ranch. It really was a priceless experience. I’ve been blessed to work with brilliant collaborators on this, which is a testament to the band’s vision. The journey of making this film is not so dissimilar from the story itself. Funny how life is sometimes.”
Billy Talent are one of Canada’s most successful bands. They have sold nearly one million albums in Canada alone, and nearly three million albums internationally including 1.3 million albums in Germany. They have won seven Juno Awards and have been nominated 23 times, including three nods for Afraid of Heights (Group of the Year, Rock Album of the Year, and Ian D’Sa for Producer of the Year). They have also twice been awarded ECHO Awards In 2018, the group was honored with a special Legends of Live Special Achievement Award, presented by Canadian Music Week. Most recently, Billy Talent have launched the Billy Talent Charity Trust to give more back to the organizations that the band believes in.
Billy Talent will be rolling out further episodes from this narrative series throughout 2020.