Casting decisions for the hotly anticipated 'Stardust' are in, with the relatively unknown musician and actor Flynn securing the prized role.
The film will focus on Bowie’s 1971 US tour, a period of immense creative rebirth for the superstar.
Fascinated by the self-destructive tendencies and general eccentricity of Vince Taylor, Bowie became intrigued by creating a whole new kind of pop star.
The exact provenance of the androgynous, bisexual Ziggy is shrouded in mystery, but Bowie’s creation of the alter ego is also thought to have been inspired by Iggy Pop and Lou Reed, both of whom he worked with in this era. In one retelling of the tour, Bowie scribbled notes on a napkin in a fit of inspiration and these jottings became the basis of the seminal character.
— Consequence of Sound (@consequence) January 31, 2019
Screenwriter Christopher Bell (The Last Czars) is attached to the project, while Jena Malone will play Bowie’s first wife, Angie, and Marc Maron his ambitious publicist.
The 35-year-old Flynn is currently appearing in a West End production of True West and Amazon series Vanity Fair He will also be part of an upcoming adaptation of Jane Austen’s Emma. He has also played at least one other twentieth-century icon, Albert Einstein, in Genius.
He is perhaps best known, however, for his work in cultish dramedy Lovesick, however, where he plays Dylan, a sensitive but romantically confused landscape gardener prone to mumbling and mooning. While there is an unforced likeability to his work there, capturing the star wattage and otherworldly dynamism of Bowie seems another challenge entirely.
In his other guise as a musician, he has released four folk-inflected albums and won over a number of critics. In an 8/10 review of his most recent LP, 2017 release Sillions, Drowned in Sound found him “striding comfortably and confidently into his own future”.
Johnny Flynn to Play David Bowie in 'Stardust,' Marc Maron also Attached https://t.co/FRTWeVIvNn
— Variety (@Variety) January 31, 2019
Not everyone was thrilled with the news of the project. Bowie’s son Duncan Jones poured cold water on the announcement on Twitter, saying the producers had not secured any rights to his father’s music. “As it stands, this movie won’t have any of dads music in it, & I can’t imagine that changing.
“If you want to see a biopic without his music or the families blessing, thats up to the audience.”
Hollywood has taken music biographies very seriously of late, surprisingly making Bohemain Rhapsody an award circuit mainstay despite middling reviews. There are also biographies of Celine Dion and Elton John on the way.
Principal photography is expected to begin in June.