If you’re reading this it’s likely you’ve seen Michael Winterbottom’s 2002 film 24 Hour Party People but if you came out of thinking, “I’d like to see the story of Factory Records but with a lot more talking heads and a lot less Steve Coogan”, BBC4 had your back, albeit five years later. Released in 2007, Factory: Manchester from Joy Division to Happy Mondays told the story of the seminal record label by focusing by their three most notable acts – Joy Division, New Order, and The Happy Mondays.
The Beeb described the film as follows:
Documentary celebrating the triumph, tragedy and human comedy that was Manchester record company, Factory. Started by the late Tony Wilson, Alan Erasmus, Peter Saville and Martin Hannett in the late 1970s, it became known as the home of Joy Divsion, New Order and Happy Mondays and for creating the Hacienda club. The label pioneered Britain’s independent pop culture, creating a new Manchester and blowing a shed-load of money. Includes interviews with all the main players in the Factory story.Factory: Manchester from Joy Division to Happy Mondays @ BBC4
And while the doc likely hasn’t been available to watch online for a while – and never, if you don’t live in the UK – a high-quality copy has surfaced on YouTube and is obviously totally worth your time.