Bootlicker: St. Louis Artist Kelly Wild Wants Her Music Removed From Controversial Movie

Kelly Wild headshot.jpg
Courtesy of Wild
Kelly Wild
Last week, we told you about the backlash local filmmaker Terry Artis was facing for his movie Bootlicker, screening at the Tivoli Theatre today. Part of the controversy stemmed from a flyer for the movie that depicts Mayor Francis Slay as some sort of slave master towering over his black supporters or "slayves."

This is not the only complaint he is receiving.

St. Louis musician Kelly Wild, who collaborated with Artis many years ago, is less than pleased that her copyrighted music appears in the film's trailer -- and her name is listed on the movie's "original soundtrack."

"I don't want my name attached to this in any way shape or form," she tells Daily RFT.

Is Artis going to comply with her requests -- or will she take him to court?

For a quick background, we first wrote about this film in the context of the increasingly contentious race for mayor of St. Louis. Artis, the president and publisher of RiverCity Xaminer, an online black news organization in St. Louis, has formally endorsed Lewis Reed, the president of the Board of Aldermen hoping to oust long-time mayor Slay in the upcoming March primary.

Tivoli theater image.JPG
Sam Levin
Current sign at the Tivoli promoting Bootlicker.

Reed's opponents have pointed out that the candidate's support has often come from controversial figures -- and Artis is no exception. (The Reed camp, however, notes that he has absolutely nothing to do with this film or the slavery flyer).

The film is showing tonight at the Tivoli, which he rented out for a one night only screening.

It's unclear how exactly the film, which Artis says is a documentary he has been working on for some time, portrays Reed or Slay, but it seems pretty low-budget, at least based on its trailer:

This footage just so happens to feature the music of Wild, who says she hadn't talked to Artis for many years and that he never asked his permission to use her songs.

She recently stumbled on the trailer after seeing Artis promoting the film on Facebook.

"I could hear my music and I'm like, 'What is that?'" she says. "Three of us wrote that music over ten years ago."

Continue for more of our interview with Kelly Wild and response from Terry Artis.



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