A Short Film by Director John Roecker
Based on the Characters from Green Day's Grammy Award Winning Album American Idiot.
John Roecker who Directed the soon to be released Feature Length Documentary “Heart
Like a Hand Grenade” (“HLAHG”) about the making of Green Day's best selling album to
date - “American Idiot” - brings you his take on the characters as originally visualized from
AI, what many consider to be the first true “punk rock” opera.
John's longtime friendship with Billie Joe Armstrong, (the lead singer and guitarist of Green
Day) gave him insight into the band's creative vision, and put John at ground zero...in the
recording studio along with the band. John's task seemed simply really, to document the
creative process as it unfolded – honest, uncensored, and real. What emerged The
American Idiot Album, now considered by many to be Green Day's greatest musical
achievement. As John continued to document the layers of creativity behind the music of AI,
he started to visualize who the characters were, and what they were truly meant to be.
Two main characters created within the songs of AI are “Whatsername” and “Jesus of
Suburbia” … they are the basis for the story of “They're All Out Without You” - A Tale of
Dark and Light, a Twisted Modern Day Romeo & Juliet Story.
The footage for TAOWY (originally intended as a part of “HLAHG”) went missing for many
years, until it was recently discovered by John hidden away in a vintage 1940's lunch box.
John enlisted HLAHG editor Dean Gonzales to assemble the lost TAOWY footage to reflect
the story and image that both John and Billie had originally intended several years before.
When this footage was shot, nobody could have known just how wild a ride the success of AI
would be for Green Day - About 18 million copies of American Idiot have been sold to date
world wide, with far too many Grammy's, AMA's, MTV, Billboard, and other awards to
mention. Most recently, the AI album became the basis for the creation of a Tony Award
Winning Broadway Musical version of American Idiot.
This footage is raw, and intense, as it is the very first vision of these troubled characters.
Much of the world knows these characters in their various forms, but TAOWY was filmed at
the very peak of the creative process for American Idiot – TAOWY is a beautiful yet tortured
snapshot of a creative time long before the dozens of awards, before Green Day's “second
wave of success” and well before “Punks” were a hit on Broadway. “They're All Out
Without You” is a true punk rock vision, now rediscovered for the world to see.