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Searching for Sugar Man (2012)

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Two South Africans set out to discover what happened to their unlikely musical hero, the mysterious 1970s rock n roller, Rodriguez.


Won 1 Oscar. Another 39 wins & 30 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Dennis Coffey ...
Himself - Co-Producer, Cold Fact 1970
Mike Theodore ...
Dan DiMaggio ...
Himself - Bartender, The Brewery
Jerome Ferretti ...
Himself - Bricklayer
Himself - Producer, Coming from Reality 1971
Willem Möller ...
Himself - Musician
Craig Bartholomew Strydom ...
Himself - Music Journalist (as Craig Bartholomew-Strydom)
Ilse Assmann ...
Herself - Former Apartheid Archivist
Steve M. Harris ...
Himself - Teal Trutone
Robbie Mann ...
Himself - RPM Records
Himself - Former Chairman of Motown Records
Eva Rodriguez ...
Herself - Rodriguez's Eldest Daughter
Himself (as Sixto Rodriguez)
Herself - Rodriguez's Youngest Daughter


In the early 1970s, Sixto Rodriguez was a Detroit folksinger who had a short-lived recording career with only two well received but non-selling albums. Unknown to Rodriguez, his musical story continued in South Africa where he became a pop music icon and inspiration for generations. Long rumored there to be dead by suicide, a few fans in the 1990s decided to seek out the truth of their hero's fate. What follows is a bizarrely heartening story in which they found far more in their quest than they ever hoped, while a Detroit construction laborer discovered that his lost artistic dreams came true after all. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (kchishol@rogers.com)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for brief strong language and some drug references | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




| |


Release Date:

26 July 2012 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Sugar Man  »

Filming Locations:



Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$27,459, 29 July 2012, Limited Release

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Only film directed by Malik Bendjelloul. See more »


During the credits there is a spelling error - It says "Mabu Vinly" instead of "Mabu Vinyl" See more »


Rodriguez: Thanks for keeping me alive!
See more »


Crucify Your Mind
Written by Rodriguez (as Sixto Rodriguez)
Courtesy of Hey Day Entertainment, LLC by arrangement
with Light in the Attic Records & Distribution, LLC
See more »

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User Reviews

Long lost gem. Lovely movie and a must for fans of Dylan-esque music
21 July 2012 | by See all my reviews

I caught this movie at an advanced screening at the UN during Mandela week and I must say I was pleasantly surprised by the movie and even more enthralled to discover this long, lost gem of music. The movie revolves around an up-and-coming Rock'n'roller from the 70s who recorded two albums and then disappeared into obscurity. His music was lost in the US but by a strange coincidence becomes a cult hit in South Africa and becomes a symbol of rebellion for the underground white, anti-apartheid sub-culture. The documentary is a lovely journey of discovery of the south africans who try to find the roots of this enigma and re-discover his music. I won't spoil too much but for fans of Dylan like music, this might be a long, lost gem and music that perhaps, at least now, deserves more recognition and appreciation.

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