English actresses Hayley Atwell (Captain America: The First Avenger) and Imogen Poots (Fright Night) have joined Outkast rapper Andre 3000 on the cast of the Jimi Hendrix biopic ‘All Is By My Side,’ which is due to begin filming in Ireland this month.
As exclusively revealed by IFTN last Friday (May 4), Andre 3000 will play Hendrix in the Irish co-produced feature, which will shoot on-location in Dublin and Wicklow. The rapper arrived in Ireland this week and is currently preparing for the role ahead of production. The feature does not, however, have the support of the late rock star’s estate who will not allow Hendrix’s music to be used in the film.
No further details as to Atwell and Poots’ co-starring roles have been announced although it is expected that Atwell will play Linda Keith, the woman who discovered Hendrix in New York’s Cheetah Club in 1966 and helped bring him to worldwide attention.
‘U-Turn’ and ‘Three Kings’ screenwriter John Ridley will direct from his original screenplay with producers revealing that the film will be based on interviews with Hendrix as well as archival materials. Ridley has previously documented Hendrix and Keith’s relationship in a radio feature for NPR entitled ‘Send My Love To Linda: An Untold Jimi Hendrix Story.’
Dublin-based Subotica Entertainment will co-produce the feature with America’s Darko Entertainment and Britain’s Matador Pictures. Darko is financing the project, while Content Film are handling sales outside of the US.
Tristan Orphen Lynch will produce for Subotica alongside Darko’s Sean McKittrick, Jeff Culotta and Danny Bramson. Nigel Thomas will produce for Matador. Ridley and Tedd Hamm will executive produce.
A statement released by the producers states: “In ‘All Is By My Side,’ there’s rock music. Then there’s Jimi Hendrix. ‘All Is By My Side’ captures the energy, the charisma, the mind-boggling talent of a legend whose musical influence still resonates around the world today. Based on actual interviews and archival materials, ‘All Is By My Side’ brings authenticity and poignantly reveals a Jimi Hendrix behind the legend. At its heart a love story, ‘All Is By My Side’ is about a man growing up, falling in love and becoming Jimi.
As stated, the project has not been licensed by Hendrix’s estate, Experience Hendrix LLC, who yesterday distanced themselves from the unlicensed biopic. It means ‘All Is By My Side’ will not feature any of Hendrix’s original material unless permission from his estate is subsequently granted.
In a statement Experience Hendrix LLC said: “Various media outlets have recently published accounts that indicate a feature length Jimi Hendrix biographical film is nearing production. Experience Hendrix, LLC, the family-owned company entrusted with safeguarding the legacy of Jimi Hendrix and administrator of the Jimi Hendrix music and publishing catalog has made it known many times in the past that no such film, were it to include original music or copyrights created by Jimi Hendrix, can be undertaken without its full participation.”
However, Hendrix’s estate did not rule out involvement in a future biopic. The statement added: “Experience Hendrix CEO Janie Hendrix, sister of Jimi Hendrix, and the EH board have not ruled out a ‘biopic’ in the future though producing partners would, out of necessity, have to involve the company from the inception of any such film project if it is to include original Jimi Hendrix music or compositions.”
IFTN understands that the feature will get around using Hendrix’s music by covering his early years and focusing on the period from his ‘discovery’ in New York in 1966 up to the point of the release of his debut album in 1967.
It is also possible that producers may seek to use songs covered by Hendrix, such as his 1966 debut single ‘Hey Joe,’ the copyright of which is not owned by Experience Hendrix LLC and was registered in 1962 by Billy Roberts. Other notable Hendrix covers include ‘All Along The Watchtower,’ which was written by Bob Dylan.
As previously reported by IFTN, Irish locations to be used during the shoot include Bray Head Hotel; the John Player Cigarette Factory on South Circular Road; Bray itself; a number of nightclubs in Bray, Dun Laoghaire and various other locations around Dublin.
Among the key Irish crew who will work on the project are line producer Donna Eperon (Love Eternal, The Other Side of Sleep); assistant art director Nenazoma McNamee (Dark Touch); cinematographer Tim Fleming (Once, Citadel); hair stylist Lorraine Glynn Whelan (Breakfast On Pluto, Albert Nobbs); make-up artist Morna Ferguson (In America, The Guard); prop buyer Sarah Kingston (Byzantium, The Guard); Ele Wood (The Other Side of Sleep) and art department trainee Julia Davin-Power (Love Eternal).
Leonie Pendergast (Raw, What Richard Did) is costume designer, while Dan Birch (Camelot, Parked, The Tudors) will look after the on-location sound. Other crew on-board include English production designer Paul Cross (Spooks, Luther).