On February 22, 2021, Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo and Thomas Bangalter revealed that they were calling it quits after first forming in Paris in 1993. The announcement came in the form of an excerpt from the duo’s 2006 film Daft Punk’s Electroma in which the band members’ dramatized counterparts (depicted as actual robots and portrayed by different actors) are walking in the desert when Bangalter silently requests Homem-Christo to initiate his self-destruct function before going their separate ways. Even for the few who have managed to see the rare avant-garde, sci-fi cult favorite, the clip is a haunting eight minutes, especially when associated with their mysterious split.
Ironically, Electroma, which the Daft Punk directed, does not include any of their own music, but the films and TV series to which they have contributed their talents would only make them harder, better, sometimes even faster, and definitely stronger. In honor of their 28 years changing the face of music without showing their faces, we look back on five of those memorable moments, starting with another “break-up,” of sorts, between two heroes in shiny, metal masks.