Bee Gees Documentary Film Earns 6 Emmy Nominations

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Photo of the Bee Gees via HBO

2020’s The Bee Gees: How Can You Mend a Broken Heart, a feature length documentary about the legendary group, has been nominated for six Emmy Awards. The film, from HBO Documentary Films chronicles the rise of the iconic trio, consisting of brothers Barry, Maurice and Robin Gibb, their music and its evolution over the years. It debuted on HBO on Dec. 12. It’s also available to stream on HBO Max. Watch the official trailer and a clip from the film below.

The title’s Emmy nominations, announced on July 13, include Outstanding Documentary Or Nonfiction Special, Outstanding Writing For A Nonfiction Program, and Outstanding Directing For A Documentary/Nonfiction Program. The 73rd Annual Primetime Emmy Awards will take place on Sunday, September 19.

The excellent film takes its title from the group’s 1971 single, their first to reach #1 in the U.S. The Brothers Gibb went on to earn another eight chart-toppers in the U.S., including six in a row in the late ’70s, including such classic hits as “Stayin’ Alive” and “Night Fever” from the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack.

The phenomenal statistics only start there. In the U.S. they achieved 15 Top 10 singles and 24 that reached the Top 20.

Watch Barry Gibb explain how he came up with “Jive Talkin'”

“Everything we set out to do, we did, against all odds,” says Barry Gibb in the trailer.

Watch the trailer

“I feel I can write a song in a minute with Maurice and Robin,” Barry Gibb told music journalist and author Harvey Kubernik, in an interview some years ago. “I’m really happy that people are acknowledging our influence on popular music. You have no idea what a thrill it is to have a top five single in England. With all the new wave and punk rock out I would have thought something like ‘How Deep is Your Love’ wouldn’t have a chance.” The song reached #3 in the U.K. and #1 in America.

Robin Gibb told Kubernik, “We’ve been through all the stages, struggling, and then hitting it big, we’ve split and re-formed, had number ones, toured the world.” Robin passed in 2012 at age 62. Brother Maurice died in 2003; he was just 53.

The Bee Gees: How Can You Mend a Broken Heart is directed by Academy Award nominated filmmaker Frank Marshall (The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Seabiscuit), and was an official selection for the 2020 Telluride Film Festival. Marshall also produced alongside Nigel Sinclair and Jeanne Elfant Festa, part of the award-winning team behind HBO’s The Apollo and producers of The Beatles: Eight Days a Week and HBO’s George Harrison: Living in the Material World, and Mark Monroe.

Watch a clip from the film, featuring interviews with Justin Timberlake and Noel Gallagher, among others

And one more clip from Timberlake about the group’s harmonies in “Stayin’ Alive.”

“Like so many people, I’ve loved the Bee Gees’ music all my life,” said Marshall in the original announcement for the documentary. “But discovering their uncanny creative instincts and the treasure trove of music, their humor, and loyalty was a great two-year journey.”

Related: Our Album Rewind of Main Course, the Bee Gees’ turning point

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