Ministry marked the 20th anniversary of their cameo performance in Steven Spielberg’s 2001 film A.I. Artificial Intelligence. In the film they played two songs called “What About Us?” and “Dead Practice,” the second of which was renamed as “Lockbox” on their 2003 record Animositisomina.
A.I. Artificial Intelligence is a movie about an A.I. boy played by The Sixth Sense child actor Haley Joel Osment, who tries to figure out his place in the world. Osment is joined by other famous actors like Jude Law, William Hurt, Ben Kingsley, Meryl Streep and Robin Williams, among others.
In the movie, Ministry is the band playing at an event called ‘Flesh Fair: A Celebration of Life,’ which is essentially an anti-A.I. festival. Ministry rock skull-decorated costumes and futuristic guitars while they perform the songs.
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Ministry had already been around for 20 years at the time the movie was released. They started out as a new wave band before they began gradually adopting industrial elements into their music. Then, when industrial-metal first began popping up, Ministry jumped on the sound, becoming one of the initial pioneers of the style. Their albums around that time including The Land of Rape and Honey (1988), The Mind Is a Terrible Thing to Taste (1989) and ΚΕΦΑΛΗΞΘ [Psalm 69] (1992) soon became industrial-metal classics.
Their late ‘90s albums leading up to their A.I. Artificial Intelligence cameo saw solid, but less resounding success. They have kept releasing music pretty consistently since then, up to their most recent full-length, 2018’s AmeriKKKant. Ministry revealed last year that they’ve begun work on a new album and shared a single called “Alert Level” in April.
In other news on the band, guitarist Sin Quirin, who joined the group in 2007, was accused of alleged sexual relationships with minors in January 2020, possibly contributing to his decision to eventually leave the band a year later. He denies the allegations, but stated in May this year, “I feel the time is right for me to focus on my health, my personal life, as well as other projects and interests.”
Photo credit: Brett Padelford