Acclaimed Composer Ólafur Arnalds Joins ARI’S THEME as EP Ahead of Hot Docs World Premiere

aris-theme-hot-docsSalazar Film announced today that award-winning Icelandic multi-instrumentalist and composer Ólafur Arnalds has joined the TELUS original documentary feature ARI’S THEME as an Executive Producer ahead of the film’s world premiere at Hot Docs on April 30th, 2024. The film, directed by filmmaking duo Salazar, Nathan Drillot and Jeff Lee Petry (Wizard Mode, Tegan and Sara Get Along), will screen to audiences for the first time in Toronto on April 30th and again on May 2nd, 2024 with the team in attendance. They also officially launched the ARI’S THEME trailer ahead of the fest.

Filmed in Victoria, B.C., ARI’S THEME follows Ari Kinarthy, a 34 year old music composer with a rare genetic condition called Spinal Muscular Atrophy Type 2. The condition causes his muscles to deteriorate and will shorten his life. By sixteen Ari had lost the ability to move his arms but through a music therapy program he was introduced to composing, finding his life’s purpose. Now 18 years later with his diploma from Berklee College of Music, Ari feels the negative progression of his SMA. Focused on his legacy, Ari sets out to create the soundtrack of the most impactful memories of his young life.

“We can’t ever know how long we’ll be remembered or what impact we really made. But today I’m happy with the thought that if you find yourself humming one of my melodies, you will have invoked me and my story, and you will in turn remember me,” says composer & ARI’S THEME subject Ari Kinarthy.

Ólafur Arnalds is an Icelandic multi-instrumentalist and producer who is known for his solo work as well as his work composing in film. Ólafur composed the score for the the ITV series Broadchurch, for which he won the 2014 BAFTA TV Craft Award for Best Original Music, was nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award for his title theme on the Apple TV+ series Defending Jacob and was nominated in two categories at the 64th Annual Grammy Awards. Arnalds has had music featured on numerous film and television soundtracks including Nomadland, The Hunger Games and has collaborated with artists including Odesza, Nils Frahm, RY X and more.

The team behind ARI’S THEME, Nathan Drillot and Jeff Lee Petr,y have been working under the moniker Salazar for more than a decade producing and directing award-winning documentary content, across 21 countries, from Nunavik to Bolivia, to the Democratic Republic of Congo. Highlights include their feature length documentary Wizard Mode, which premiered at Hot Docs and was acquired by Netflix US, the ten episode broadcast docu-series The Wrestlers for Viceland and the Juno and Grammy nominated full length music documentary Tegan and Sara Get Along. Their short documentary Handsome and Majestic was included in the British Council and BFI Flare Film Festival’s “5 Films For Freedom” campaign and has been shown at over 35 festivals. The short film I’ll Tell You When I’m Ready, which they produced, will also have its Canadian premiere at Hot Docs 2024 and an international premiere at the British Film Institute Flair 2024.

ARI’S THEME is a TELUS original documentary and is produced by Salazar Film. Credits include: Ari Kinarthy Subject & Composer, Director of Photography Nathan Drillot and Jeff Lee Petry, additional Cinematography Kaayla Whachell, Edited by Benjamin Schuetze and Graham Fortin, Directed by Nathan Drillot and Jeff Lee Petry, Sound Design by Eugenio Battaglia, Visual Effects by Roman Betanzos, Animation by Scott Lougheed, Additional Orchestration by Johannes Winkler and Featuring violin performance by Rusanda Panfili. Production Executives for TELUS Ken Tsui and Malcolm Oliver, Executive Producer is Ólafur Arnalds. ARI’S THEME features Ari Kinarthy, Allan Slade BMT MTA, Johannes Winkler, Leah Kinarthy and Elior Kinarthy. ARI’S THEME was made possible with the generous support of TELUS originals and with thanks to the Victoria Conservatory of Music.