A documentary directed by Alex Winter exploring the Napster downloading revolution; the kids who created it, the bands & businesses that were affected and its impact on the world at large.
Also Stream Free on Mobile and TV. Roku, Xbox, Sony, Samsung
  • Next:
  • More:
Produced: 2013 By: VH1 Rock Docs
    Part One
    14:15  9/12/2013
    Part Two
    The Disrupters
    6:38  9/12/2013
    Part Three
    The Last Record Men
    5:27  9/12/2013
    Part Four
    Bigger Than AOL
    20:01  9/12/2013
    Part Five
    Here There Be Pirates
    19:07  9/12/2012
    Part Six
    The Center Cannot Hold
    21:20  9/12/2013
    Part Seven
    You Say You Want A Revolution
    19:45  9/12/2013
    Full Film
    01:46:11  09/12/2013
    3:16  05/01/2013
    HuffPost Live
    How Napster Changed The World
    17:23  9/18/2013
    HuffPost Live
    Alex Winter On Napster And The Digit...
    20:33  2/6/2013
    TechCrunch Disrupt
    Downloaded With Ron Conway and Al...
    26:35  4/30/2013
    TechCrunch Disrupt
    Backstage With "Downloaded" Direct...
    6:31  4/30/2013
    TechCrunch Disrupt
    "It's More About Convenience Than The...
    1:30  4/30/2013
    Alex Winter Talks Napster Inspired Documenta...
    3:32  10/25/2013
    VH1 Top 20 Gives Alex Winter’s Download...
    1:19  10/7/2013


Discuss Show


The Hollywood Reporter, September 9, 2013
Loading ..
  • The Hollywood Reporter, September 9, 2013 The Hollywood Reporter, September 9, 2013 Alex Winter's Napster Doc 'Downloaded' to Be Offered for Free Streaming

    Downloaded, Alex Winter’s documentary about the rise and fall of Napster, will become available for free streaming Thursday on AOL’s video platform AOL On. It’s the first feature AOL has acquired to offer for free streaming.
  • Variety, March 13, 2013 Variety, March 13, 2013 SXSW: Festival Clicks with Tech Pics

    Of all the things that set South by Southwest apart from other sprocket operas, most significant is how it combines a world-class film festival with equally dynamic music and interactive media events. For years, the film programmers tied film and music together by booking a generous sidebar of rock docs. But who wants to watch the equivalent techie pics?
  • Mashable, March 11, 2013 Mashable, March 11, 2013 Napster Documentary 'Downloaded' Wades Through the 'Bullsh-t'

    Napster co-founders Shawn Fanning and Sean Parker were unsure how the audience at South by Southwest would react to the premiere screening of Downloaded, the new documentary detailing the birth of digital-media sharing and Napster's downfall.
  • Time Entertainment, March 6, 2013 Time Entertainment, March 6, 2013 Shakespeare to Napster: The 2013 SXSW Film Festival Raids the Pop-Culture Closet

    There are a lot of movies to choose from at this year’s South by Southwest Film Festival, which begins this Friday in Austin, TX. No fewer than 133, in fact, screening in eighteen different categories ranging from “Narrative Spotlight” to “24 Beats Per Second” to “SXGlobal” — an almost overwhelming feast of cinematic entertainment across the nine-day event.
  • The New York Times, June 20, 2013 The New York Times, June 20, 2013 When My Music Was Your Music

    The sound of dial-up connections may be quaint in Alex Winter’s “Downloaded,” but not the issues in the film, the latest in VH1’s enlightening series of Rock Docs. In tracing the rapid rise and gradual emasculation of Napster, the peer-to-peer file-sharing service that flourished in the 1990s, “Downloaded” tells a fascinating story about how college students harnessed the Internet to enable people to trade favorite songs, and how a blindsided music industry, ignorant of the Web’s potential, effectively shut them down.
  • TechCrunch, April 30, 2013 TechCrunch, April 30, 2013 Ron Conway Talks Napster And The Sharing Economy Problem That “Never Got Solved”

    On stage at Disrupt NY 2013 today, serial investor Ron Conway and filmmaker/actor Alex Winter took the stage with CrunchFund’s MG Siegler to talk about the documentary Downloaded about the rise and fall of Napster. Ron Conway described being an early investor (his Angel Investors fund put around $500,000 into Napster, he said) and how the process of taking them through the ordeal went. One of the biggest issues, he said, is that the sharing economy problem Napster identified never got solved.
  • Spin, April 17, 2013 Spin, April 17, 2013 Time-Travel Back to 2000 With Napster Documentary 'Downloaded'

    The sun has set on the Sundance Film Festival, which means cinephiles have already moved on to anticipating South by Southwest. One notable feature is Downloaded, a documentary about Napster's rise, fall, and fallout, directed by Alex Winter (better known as the Bill to Keanue Reeves' Ted). A new trailer for the VH1 Rock Doc was unveiled earlier this week (via Deadline), which you can watch up above. The two-minute preview doubles as a time capsule of life circa 2000: Christina Aguilera hadn't yet gone "Dirrty," Jon Stewart hadn't gone gray, Carson Daly was still on MTV, and Newsweek was still in print.
  • The Hollywood Reporter, March 7, 2013 The Hollywood Reporter, March 7, 2013 SXSW: 'Bill and Ted' Star's Napster Documentary

    Alex Winter was Keanu Reeves' co-star in Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure. But Bill and Ted never saw anything as cool as Winter's documentary Downloaded: The Digital Revolution, which receives its world premiere March 10 at the interactive/music/film South by Southwest Festival in Austin. It tells how two teenagers, Shawn Fanning and Sean Parker, reinvented the music industry, got crushed and still managed to get rich with such game-changers as Facebook and Spotify.
  • Los Angeles Times, March 9, 2013 Los Angeles Times, March 9, 2013 SXSW 2013: Napster film 'Downloaded' comes alive as a documentary

    More than a decade ago, Alex Winter saw a revolution brewing. Winter is perhaps best known as Bill, the blond-haired high school slacker from the 1989 comedy "Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure." But he's also a tech head, a music fan and a director.
  • BBC, March 15, 2013 BBC, March 15, 2013 Napster: From bedroom to silver screen

    Now the story of Napster, told from both sides of the debate, has been made into a documentary by director Alex Winter - famous for being one half of movie duo, Bill and Ted.

    The film, called Downloaded, had its world premiere at the SXSW music and film festival in Texas this week.
  • Wired, March 1, 2013 Wired, March 1, 2013 Exclusive Clip: Relive Napster’s Big Break in the Documentary Downloaded

    If the 1990s had a baby, it might look something like the documentary Downloaded. For one, it’s about the rise and fall of Napster, complete with plaid-heavy video of the young Sean Parker and Shawn Fanning. For another, it’s directed by Alex Winter, aka Bill S. Preston, Esq. from the Bill & Ted movies. Combined they’re the bookends of the decade that launched web culture.
  • The Huffington Post, March 10, 2013 The Huffington Post, March 10, 2013 'Downloaded' Documentary Airs At SXSW, Highlighting History Of Sharing Music Online

    "Downloaded," a documentary film exploring the history of sharing music on the Internet, made its world premiere Sunday at South by Southwest, a festival that marries music, technology and film.
  • The Guardian, February 24, 2013 The Guardian, February 24, 2013 Napster: the day the music was set free

    In the first weeks of 2000 the founders of Napster were in their office above a bank in San Mateo, California, considering dizzying numbers. Figures scrawled on a whiteboard told how many people around the world had installed their file-sharing application and were using it to download music from each other's computers. As recounted in Downloaded – a documentary soon to premiere at the SXSW film festival, telling the story of a piece of software that came and went and whipped up a new digital music industry in its slip – Napster had 20 million users at the time. Some way from San Mateo, in suburban London I had just become one myself.
  • MTV, March 19, 2013 MTV, March 19, 2013 Alex Winter Tells A Different Napster Story In 'Downloaded'

    MTV News sat down with Winter at SXSW, where he and VH1 Rock Docs premiered "Downloaded" this past week, and spoke with him about bringing the project together and how our own little news organization played a part in making it all happen.
  • TechCrunch, April 17, 2013 TechCrunch, April 17, 2013 Join Us And Shawn Fanning For A Special Screening Of DOWNLOADED At Disrupt NY

    Napster co-founder Shawn Fanning and documentarian Alex Winter will be at TechCrunch Disrupt NY next week, joining our truly badass lineup to talk about their upcoming Napster documentary DOWNLOADED.
  • Toronto Film Scene, April 27, 2013 Toronto Film Scene, April 27, 2013 Interview with Alex Winter, director of Downloaded

    Alex Winter is no “noob”. Having spent the late ‘90s in BBS and newsgroups (remember those?), he was perfectly positioned to be right in the thick of the technology boom and its resulting legal uproar. Just like the rest of us, however, he was hearing a decidedly one-sided story. It’s obvious that his love of technology stood him in good stead in tackling one of the biggest stories of the century in his latest film, Downloaded, which tells the story of peer-to-peer file sharing pioneer Napster from the inside.
  • Spin, June 28, 2013 Spin, June 28, 2013 Napster Documentary Shows Music Industry's Past, Future

    In June 1999, a sole teenager forever altered the landscape of recorded music with the launch of Napster. It wasn't the first peer-to-peer file-sharing network, but it was the best, registering as many as 80 million users at its peak. But while the public embraced the service, those creating the music traded on Napster had decidedly mixed opinions.
  • San Francisco Chronicle, August 1, 2013 San Francisco Chronicle, August 1, 2013 'Downloaded' examines birth of file sharing

    I'm talking to Bill S. Preston, Esq. - you know, from "Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure," and he's taking me back in time to visit two dudes who just wanted to party on.

    The dudes in question are Sean Parker and Shawn Fanning, the teenage boys who in 1999 started Napster, the music file-sharing system that remade the Internet and sent the music industry into panic mode. They became national figures and very wealthy, but in just two years were forced to shut the site down amid a hailstorm of lawsuits and federal decisions that branded them pirates.
  • Complex, March 11, 2013 Complex, March 11, 2013 SXSW Film Fest, Day 3: Joseph Gordon-Levitt's "Don Jon," The Napster Doc "Downloaded," & More

    Go ahead and admit it: You can't even remember the last time you trekked to a record store and actually purchased a compact disc. The rationale: Why waste hard-earned gas money driving to the nearest Best Buy when digital applications like iTunes and Spotify are effortlessly accessible from any desktop or laptop?
  • Seattle Weekly, July 2, 2013 Seattle Weekly, July 2, 2013 Downloaded: Back to the Heyday of Napster

    It’s weird enough that Utah Senator Orrin Hatch and Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich found themselves across a table in a 2001 congressional hearing. The amazing thing is that the conservative politico proved hipper than the headbanging rock star. That surreal moment came during the brief initial heyday of Napster, the online music-sharing service that mightily scared record companies and music artists alike. If you weren’t paying attention to details during the Napster affair, Downloaded is here to set some of the record straight.
  • NY Daily News, June 20, 2013 NY Daily News, June 20, 2013 Film reviews: ‘Maniac,’ ‘The Attack,’ ‘Downloaded’

    A fascinating, alternate-universe look at the dawn of the music-sharing phenom — once a cause of concern in the industry, yet now a footnote to our all-digital music marketplace. Shawn Fanning and Sean Parker — the latter portrayed by Justin Timberlake in “The Social Network” — seem flummoxed in late-’90s interviews and in court by the lack of foresight in the industry. Director Alex Winter tracks the evolution of our tunes, and current glimpses of Fanning, especially, show how small revolutions can have larger, often disturbing, soundwaves.

The Hollywood Reporter, September 9, 2013

Alex Winter's Napster Doc 'Downloaded' to Be Offered for Free Streaming

Downloaded, Alex Winter’s documentary about the rise and fall of Napster, will become available for free streaming Thursday on AOL’s video platform AOL On. It’s the first feature AOL has acquired to offer for free streaming.

Alex Winter

Alex Winter

Alex began his career as a child actor, with starring roles on Broadway and in
feature films, including the immensely popular BILL AND TED franchise and
Warner Bros. THE LOST BOYS. Alex co-directed and starred in the hit MTV
comedy series THE IDIOT BOX, followed by his feature debut FREAKED,
released by Twentieth Century Fox. Subsequent feature films include FEVER,
a psychological thriller that Alex wrote and directed. Praised by AO Scott in the
New York Times as ‘Pure Hitchcockian panic,’ FEVER was an Official Selection
at Cannes and other festivals worldwide. For TV, Alex produced and directed
two record-breaking, live-action BEN 10 movies for Cartoon Network, garnering
an Emmy nomination for best Visual Effects. Alongside his feature projects, Alex
maintains a busy career as a commercial director, screenwriter and actor.



  • Alex Winter
  • Shawn Fanning
  • Sean Parker
  • DJ Spooky