Sam Dunn

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Sam Dunn
Sam Dunn in 2005.jpg
Sam Dunn performing live with Burn to Black, 2005
Born (1974-03-20) 20 March 1974 (age 43)
Stroud, England
Alma mater University of Victoria (B.A.)
York University (M.A.)
Occupation Director, musician, anthropologist
Awards Gemini Award in 2007 for Metal: A Headbanger's Journey
SXSW Viewers Choice Award in 2009 for Iron Maiden: Flight 666
Tribeca Film Festival Audience Award in 2010 for Rush: Beyond The Lighted Stage

Sam Dunn (born 20 March 1974) is a Canadian musician, film director, and anthropologist best known for his series of documentaries on heavy metal music. Together with Scot McFadyen, Dunn owns the Toronto based production company Banger Films. Dunn holds a bachelor's degree in anthropology from the University of Victoria and a master's degree from York University where his thesis work centered on Guatemalan refugees.[1]


Metal: A Headbanger's Journey[edit]

Dunn's first film, co-directed with Scot McFadyen and Jessica Wise, was released in 2005. The film follows Dunn on a journey to document the origins, culture and appeal of heavy metal. It also explores the themes of heavy metal- violence, death, religion and Satanism, gender and sexuality. The documentary featured interviews with Geddy Lee of Rush and Bruce Dickinson of Iron Maiden, whose bands Dunn would profile in later documentaries.

Global Metal[edit]

Released in 2008, Sam directed a new film, titled Global Metal. In the film, directors Scot McFadyen and Sam Dunn set out to discover how the West’s most maligned musical genre – heavy metal – has impacted the world’s cultures beyond Europe and North America. The film follows metal fan and anthropologist Sam Dunn on a whirlwind journey through Asia, South America and the Middle East as he explores the underbelly of the world’s emerging extreme music scenes — from Indonesian death metal to Israeli Oriental metal and Chinese black metal to Iranian thrash metal, etc. The film reveals a worldwide community of metalheads who are not just absorbing metal from the West – they are transforming it, and creating a new form of cultural expression in societies dominated by conflict, corruption and mass-consumerism.[2]

Iron Maiden: Flight 666[edit]

Dunn co-wrote and co-directed the 2009 documentary Iron Maiden: Flight 666 with Scot McFadyen. The film chronicles the band's 2008 tour in which a converted Boeing 757 was flown from country to country by Iron Maiden vocalist Bruce Dickinson.

Rush: Beyond The Lighted Stage[edit]

In 2009 Sam Dunn and Scot McFadyen started working on a documentary about Rush. The film premiered at the 2010 Tribeca Film Festival in New York on April 29, winning the festival's Audience Award.[3]

Metal Evolution[edit]

Dunn has produced the documentary series Metal Evolution for VH1 Classic on various metal genres. Its premiere was on November 11, 2011, considered by many to be National Metal Day.[4]

Time Machine 2011: Live in Cleveland[edit]

Is a concert DVD, Blu-ray and double CD by Canadian hard rock band Rush released on November 8, 2011. It was filmed on April 15, 2011 at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio during the band's Time Machine Tour.

En Vivo![edit]

En Vivo! is a live/video album by British heavy metal band Iron Maiden. Filmed during The Final Frontier World Tour at Estadio Nacional, Santiago, Chile on April 10, 2011, it was released on March 26, 2012 and March 27 in the United States and Canada.

Satan Lives[edit]

Released October 27, 2015, this movie examines the origins of Satan and his influence in popular culture.[5]

Musical activities[edit]

Burn to Black 2006 (L-R: Sam Dunn, Paul Harrington, Evan Johnston, Rob Ouellette, Alex Zubair)

Dunn formerly played bass for the Victoria ska/funk band, Fungkus; they disbanded in 2000. Dunn also formerly played bass for the Toronto extreme metal band, Burn to Black; they disbanded in November 2008. One of Sam Dunn's first bands was Dementia, in which he played bass. He also formed the progressive thrash metal band Scrape Chamber years later with Kelly Nordstrom. Dunn now occasionally plays bass for the Toronto band Machado and His Men; their upcoming album, Machado Boys has no release date.


Year Film
2005 Metal: A Headbanger's Journey
2008 Global Metal
2009 Iron Maiden: Flight 666
2009 Joe Bonamassa:Live From the Royal Albert Hall
2010 Rush: Beyond The Lighted Stage
2011 Metal Evolution (TV documentary series. Episodes 1-11)
2011 Time Machine 2011: Live in Cleveland (Rush concert film)
2011 Motorhead The Wörld Is Ours: Vol 1 - Everywhere Further Than Everyplace Else
2011 That Metal Show (Season 9, episode 2. - guest)
2012 En Vivo! (Iron Maiden concert film)[citation needed]
2014 Metal Evolution (TV documentary series. Episode 12)
2014 Super Duper Alice Cooper


  1. ^ "Chief Headbanger". YorkU: 23. Summer 2011. Retrieved 2013-06-18. 
  2. ^ Mann, Michael (October 2005). "Heavy Metal". The Nerve. Retrieved 2007-10-27. 
  3. ^ "Rush doc nabs Tribeca audience prize"
  4. ^ "'Metal Evolution' Documentary Series To Premiere In November | Music News @". Retrieved 2014-02-26. 
  5. ^ "IMDb page for the movie Satan"

External links[edit]