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Film to reveal Hunter Thompson memorial

‘When I Die’ documents the details of closed August service
/ Source: The Associated Press

Fans of Hunter S. Thompson will get an inside view of his elaborate memorial service in a film directed by Wayne Ewing.

“When I Die” will be shown Saturday at the Starz Denver International Film Festival. The hour-long movie depicts the creation of the 15-story tower that was used to blast Thompson’s ashes into the sky at a closed memorial service on his Woody Creek property in August.

Thompson shot himself in his kitchen on Feb. 20, apparently despondent over health problems. He was 67.

National and most local media were barred from the tribute to Thompson, who is credited, along with Tom Wolfe and Gay Talese, with helping pioneer New Journalism — he dubbed his version “gonzo journalism” — in which the writer was an essential component of the story.

Ewing, who directed 2003’s “Breakfast With Hunter,” also shows the planning and governmental approvals that organizers needed in order to honor Thompson’s wishes for his send-off.

Johnny Depp, who played Thompson in 1998’s “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas,” paid the $2.6 million cost of the memorial.