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Dave Grohl took inspiration from Joaquin Phoenix’s Joker for ‘Studio 666’

The rocker takes the lead in the Foo Fighters comedy-horror

By Joe Goggins

Dave Grohl in the 'Studio 666' trailer
'Studio 666' is in cinemas now. (Photo: YouTube)

Dave Grohl has revealed he took inspiration from Joaquin Phoenix’s Joker when filming ‘Studio 666’.

The comedy-horror movie, released in UK cinemas last Friday (February 26), sees a demonic Grohl lose his mind during the recording of a new Foo Fighters record in a haunted mansion, with spectacularly gory results. The film, directed by long-time collaborator BJ McDonnell, stars all six members of the band and is littered with high-profile cameos, with Whitney Cummings, Will Forte, Jeff Garlin, Lionel Richie, John Carpenter and Slayer’s Kerry King all making appearances.

Talking to Rolling Stone UK about the process that went into his leading role, Grohl said: “It’s funny because there is one scene where I’m just sitting at a table and I’m in a trance and I’m about to kill Taylor and I’d watched The Joker before filming it. So I just thought ‘what would Joaquin Phoenix do here?’”

“I have so much respect for these incredible actors who have been in some of my favourite movies of all time,” Grohl went on, “but I am in no way an actor myself. To pull any inspiration from any of these people would be ridiculous, I just wouldn’t know what to do.” Nevertheless, some critics have praised ‘Studio 666’, the title of which is a nod to Studio 606, the group’s space Los Angeles. The Observer called the film “oddly endearing”.

Grohl also confirmed that a full album from Dream Widow, the fictional thrash metal band featured in the film, is imminent. “We finished it last night and I think it’s coming out next week,” Grohl revealed. “I don’t feel obligated to be myself, I’m working as hard as I can to make it not sound like me. To assume the personalities of these people that were written into the script and release my fucking inner teenage thrash fanboy was great! I grew up listening to punk rock and thrash metal in the 80s and I don’t necessarily apply that to what we do, but it’s fun letting that out.”

The record will mark the second tongue-in-cheek release from Foo Fighters in as many years, after last July’s album of disco covers, ‘Hail Satin’, released under the name Dee Gees. Their last proper album was 2020’s ‘Medicine at Midnight’, which they’ll take on the road in the UK this summer; shows in Manchester, Birmingham and London are in the diary. See the full dates below.

Foo Fighters, June 2022:

25 – Manchester, Emirates Old Trafford

27 – Birmingham, Villa Park

30 – London, London Stadium

July 2022:

2 – London, London Stadium