It’s also confirmed that Dylan, somewhat reticent when it comes to being interviewed, has done new interviews specifically for the film. And also Dylan’s manager, Jeff Rosen, has been undertaking interviews with performers from the Rolling Thunder Revue and artists of that period over the last few years. The tour, which took place between 1975 and 1976, has been heralded as one of Dylan’s finest and one of the finest in rock history.
It was a freewheelin’ travelling caravan of musicians, poets and artists which included Joan Baez, David Bowie’s guitarist Mick Ronson, Bob Neuwirth, Roger McGuinn, T Bone Burnett, Ramblin’ Jack Elliott, Ronee Blakley, Scarlet Rivera, Allen Ginsberg and Sam Shepard. Others who turned up for one-off shows included Joni Mitchell, Ringo Starr, Patti Smith, Bette Midler, Kinky Friedman and Dennis Hopper.
The tour was filmed at the time and in 1978, with the help of screenwriter Shepard who had been part of it and also wrote a book about it, the film Renaldo and Clara was released. The four hours of live footage, interviews and an additional fictionalised narrative where Dylan was a character called Renaldo and his then wife, Sara, was Clara wasn’t that well received critically. But it has remained a curiosity to Dylan fans over the years.