METALLICA drummer Lars Ulrich will appear in a new film called “Radio Dreams” from young Iranian director Babak Jalali. The comedy started production on November 18, 2014 in San Francisco, with Ulrich shooting his scenes on December 8, 2014. The film also features an appearance from Afghan rock band KABUL DREAMS. According to the film’s producer, Marjan Moghimi, the story is “set in a radio station where Mohsen Namjoo is a radio writer who is planning to bring METALLICA and KABUL DREAMS… face to face.”
Asked by the Persian Magnetic web site how Ulrich‘s involvement with the film came about, Moghimi said: “It was actually through Philip Kaufman, the director of ‘Hemingway & Gellhorn’, whom I had met, that such an opportunity was made possible. I got to know Philip, who directed a movie involving Lars, so when we got the idea of ‘Radio Dreams’, we were able to contact Mr. Ulrich through Philip.”
She continued: “Thankfully, since our project was referred by Philip, everything went really fast. We sent METALLICA‘s manager some samples of Babak and my works, along with a proposal stating the unreal number of METALLICA fans in Iran and the Middle East and that this movie could be a bridge between them. After an initial positive response, we got in touch with Lars‘ manager, who was a very friendly and wonderful lady. Thanks to her, we got a lot of things done very quickly.”
Moghimi added: “Everyone on the set were very excited to work with Lars, and Lars himself was very professional in treating everyone and was very friendly. I personally got the impression that he was very happy to work with a group of Persian-speaking people. From the other side, most of the people contributing to the movie are young Iranians and musicians who have been really inspired by METALLICA from really early on.”
Jalali also talked about working with Lars. He said: “It’s only natural to be stressed when you are about to work someone with such a high profile. You would think it’s going to be a very hard job, but from the moment Lars came in, he treated everyone in a really friendly and down-to-earth manner and made everyone really comfortable. He did a lot of things spontaneously and it was very interesting to me that he did some research about the other actors, such as KABUL DREAMS, and had very good information about them.”
Moghimi told Persian Magnetic that Lars did not request or receive any money for his appearance in “Radio Dreams” and promised that, if his commitments with METALLICA do not clash with promotional activities for the movie, he will happily help promote the film.
The filming of “Radio Dreams” was completed in December and the technical team is working on the final stages of the movie in London. As soon as the film is ready, it will be premiered at different festivals around the world.
Ulrich‘s role in the film is not known, although based on the plot description, it seems apparent that he will play himself.
Ulrich, who has appeared in a handful of films, told The Pulse Of Radio a while back that he gets a creative charge out of dabbling in movies. “I love being around creative processes and being around creative people, and any time you get a chance to be around creative people that are slightly outside of your own niche or whatever, it’s always cool to just see how other people work and try to be inspired by that and bring something back to your day job,” he said.
METALLICA has starred in two movies of its own — the 2004 documentary “Some Kind Of Monster” and the 2013 concert film “Through The Never” — while bassist Robert Trujillo is producing a documentary on legendary bass player Jaco Pastorius.
Ulrich was also seen as himself in the 2010 comedy “Get Him To The Greek” and played Dutch filmmaker Joris Ivens in the 2012 HBO film “Hemingway & Gellhorn”.
KABUL DREAMS is considered to be the first rock band to emerge from Afghanistan after the Taliban was overthrown. The group plays music in both English and Dari, one of Afghanistan’s native languages.