Pink Floyd’s original, troubled frontman is the subject of Mercury Studios new documentary, Have You Got It Yet? The Story of Syd Barrett and Pink Floyd.
As Deadline reports, the film was co-directed by Roddy Bogawa and the late Storm Thorgerson, co-founder of Hipgnosis and designer of some of rock’s most iconic album covers, including pretty much every Pink Floyd record from 1968’s Saucerful of Secrets through the greatest hits collection The Best of Pink Floyd: A Foot in the Door (2011). Thorgerson died in 2013 at the age of 69 of cancer. According to a statement, “The film was completed by Bogawa with StormStudios photographer Rupert Truman and producer Julius Beltrame after Storm’s untimely death.”
Thorgerson went to high school with Barrett and Roger Waters, and had a firsthand view of the band’s formation — with a name chosen by Barrett from two of his favorite blues players, Pink Anderson and Floyd Council — as well as the Barrett-written early hits, and Barrett’s decent into psychedelic drug overindulgence and mental health troubles.
“Barrett dropped out of music, returning home to Cambridge for the last 30 years of his life and his first love of painting,” Mercury Studios said in a press release. “Poignantly, some of Pink Floyd’s biggest worldwide hit records – Dark Side of the Moon, Wish You Were Here and The Wall examine themes of madness and stardom including ‘Shine On You Crazy Diamond’ and ‘Wish You Were Here,’ written as tributes to Barrett.”
Have You Got It Yet? features interviews with three other members of Pink Floyd (Roger Waters, Nick Mason, and David Gilmour), plus Barrett’s sister Rosemary Breen, Pink Floyd managers Peter Jenner and Andrew King, The Who’s Pete Townshend, Blur’s Graham Coxon, MGMT’s Andrew VanWyngarden, and one of the greatest playwrights of the last 50 years, Tom Stoppard, who used Barrett as a symbol of the promises and disappointments of the 1960s in his seminal 2006 play, Rock ‘n’ Roll.
Director Bogawa said, “It’s the tragic story of Brian Wilson and Kurt Cobain and many others in music and art whose explosive creative drives often rest on fragile exuberant energy that gets pressure cooked from their success. The film is not only a portrait of one of the most iconic cult figures in music through the lens and memories of his bandmates, lovers, friends, and musicians but also a look back at a group of friends growing up in the mid-sixties and their idealism, ambitions, hopes and dreams during such an amazing cultural moment.”
The soundtrack contains over 50 songs from Pink Floyd and Barrett’s solo discography. There is no public timeline for the film’s release.