Penelope Spheeris’ ‘Decline of Western Civilization’ Trilogy Wins Legacy Award From Cinema Eye Honors | Exclusive

The rock ‘n’ roll documentaries were made over 17 years and chronicled unruly and vibrant subcultures

Decline of Western Civilization
"Decline of Western Civilization" (Courtesy of Penelope Spheeris)

Penelope Spheeris’ nonfiction rock ‘n’ roll trilogy “The Decline of Western Civilization” will receive the 2024 Legacy Award at the Cinema Eye Honors, Cinema Eye organizers announced on Monday exclusive with TheWrap.

The films will be saluted at the Cinema Eye ceremony at the New York Academy of Medicine in New York City on Jan. 12, but Spheeris will receive the award at a later date following a screening at Vidiots in Eagle Rock, Los Angeles.

Spheeris’ three “The Decline of Western Civilization” films, made over the course of 17 years, delved into three raucous and vibrant musical subcultures. The original 1981 film chronicled the Los Angeles punk movement of the early 1980s and was later selected by the Library of Congress for preservation in the National Film Registry.


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