Bringing The Dead New Life

Published: 2004-07-30
An entire slew of biopic movies based on the lives of legendary musicians will be coming to a theatre near you. Mainly centered on figures of the sixties and seventies, the films are sure to bring interest back to artists who have long been dead.

The most recent project to have been announced will put the story of Joy Division's Ian Curtis on the big screen. 'Touching From A Distance', the book that Curtis' widow wrote on her late husband, is the basis for the movie. Slated to play Curtis, who killed himself at age 23 in 1980, is British actor Jude Law. Not only is the actor a big name, but Law looks strikingly similar to the tragic rock star.

Another film that's in the works has Outkast's Andre 3000 lined up for the leading role. Dre's muse comes in the form of one of the greatest guitar players that ever walked this earth - Jimi Hendrix. When the directors get the go-ahead from the Hendrix estate, then the biopic will be put into production. Hendrix joined the ranks of the dead at 27 on September 18th, 1970.

Another movie that's much closer to theatre screens is 'Grand Theft Parsons', a flick based on the influential Gram Parsons. In addition to making his mark as a solo artist, Parsons was a part of the Byrds and the Flying Burrito Brothers. Parsons died in 1973 at the age of 26 due to a lethal mixture of morphine and tequila.

While the other biopics portray the lives of rock stars, 'Grand Theft Parsons' centers more on the singer's legendary burial. In short, Parsons' body was stolen by his closest friends in order to give him the send-off he always wanted. That send-off included being cremated in Joshua Tree National Park, in quite an illegal manner. The main player in the escapade was Parson's road manager Phil Kaufman, played by Johnny Knoxville. 'Grand Theft Parsons' was released in New York and L.A. on June 18th.

As was reported before on Soul Shine, there are not one but two films that will tell the story of Janis Joplin. One of the movies will star Renee Zellwegger as the throaty blues-rock singer, and the other pop-singer Pink. Like Hendrix, Joplin died at the scant age of 27.

Writer: Jaclyn Arndt.



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