Coming soon: Hitchcock, Freddy Mercury on screen!
Raja Sen lists 10 promising biopics that he's excitedly looking forward to.
There appears no better way to guarantee an Oscar nomination than by doing a biopic. After being enthralled by Michelle Williams in My Week With Marilyn and Meryl Streep in The Iron Lady, Hollywood's got a slew of very promising biopics in various stages of production.
Here's a look at 10 films I'm rather excited about:
Scarlett Johansson as Janet Leigh
In a new film about the making of Alfred Hitchcock's most celebrated film, Psycho, Johansson plays the actress inevitably best known for being stabbed in the shower.
Married to Tony Curtis and mother to Jamie Lee Curtis, Janet starred in landmark films like Touch Of Evil, The Manchurian Candidate after being discovered by Norma Shearer, who was enchanted by Leigh's smile.
In the new film, Anthony Hopkins plays Hitchcock.
Image: Scarlett Johansson, Janet Leigh in Psycho
Photographs: Reuters/Richard Clement
Sienna Miller as Tippi Hedren
While on Hitch, he'll be played by Toby Jones in another new film about the director's bizarre relationship with Tippi Hedren, the actress he cast in The Birds and Marnie.
The master director reportedly put Hedren through much stress as he tried to turn her into a 'Hitchcock Blonde' -- like Kim Novak, Eva Marie Saint and Joan Fontaine.
In an interview earlier this year, Hedren claimed that Hitch scuppered her career because she refused his sexual advances, which means this film might not paint the director in a flattering light.
Image: Sienna Miller, Tippi Hedren in Marnie
Photographs: Reuters/Fred Prouser
Malin Akerman as Linda Lovelace
In 1972, a hardcore pornographic film called Deep Throat wasn't just commercially successful, but crossed over to the mainstream, so to speak, reviewed favourably by such publications by The New York Times, and instantly making its fantastic heroine a bonafide star.
Akerman, who played Silk Spectre in the Watchmen film and stars regularly on Children's Hospital, seems a very interesting choice for the part.
Image: Malin Akerman and Linda Lovelace
Photographs: Angela Weiss/Getty Images, Express Newspapers/Getty Images
Amanda Seyfried as Linda Lovelace
Lovelace had quite the life, more than enough to fill two feature films.
After the fame of Deep Throat and some softcore pornography, she discovered religion and decided to "change her ways."
Her subsequent autobiographies alleged that Deep Throat, far from being the liberating experience she'd first called it, was a highly exploitative work by her husband Chuck Traynor, the film's director.
She claimed that he made the film at gunpoint, and that watching it was tantamount to watching her being raped. In the Seyfried film, James Franco plays Playboy magnate Hugh Hefner.
Image: Amanda Seyfried and Linda Lovelace
Photographs: Reuters/Mario Anzuoni, Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty Images
Lindsay Lohan as Elizabeth Taylor
Tumultuous tabloid queen Lindsay Lohan will play Liz Taylor in a new film after the legendary actress passed away last year.
It's hard not to be smitten by Taylor and the film, called Liz and Dick, will focus on her relationship with Richard Burton, whom she married and divorced twice.
The troubled young starlet has often claimed to be obsessed with Old Hollywood, and it'll be fascinating to see if she can reclaim her career with a film about a legend more infamous than most.
Image: Lindsay Lohan, Elizabeth Taylor in Cleopatra
Photographs: Reuters/Phil McCarten
Harrison Fors as Branch Rickey
In what could be the next Moneyball, Harrison Ford is gearing up to play Branch Rickey, the general manager to the Brooklyn Dodgers baseball team, and the man who -- along with star player Jackie Robinson -- eradicated segregation in baseball by championing a great black player.
It's a great part, and one for which Robert Redford was approached a decade ago.
Ford hasn't done anything of note in a while, and this would be a fine challenge.
Image: Harrison Ford
Photographs: Reuters/Fred Prouser
Michael Shannon as Richard Kuklinski
The life of a contract killer makes for good reading, and Anthony Bruno's book on Richard Kuklinski is now being turned into a film called The Iceman, after Kuklinski's 'handle' as a killer.
Chris Evans, who will be seen as Captain America in The Avengers, will play Robert Pronge, Kuklinski's mentor and Shannon, who was nominated for an Oscar for his brilliant work in Revolutionary Road, will play Kuklinski.
Image: Michael Shannon and Richard Kuklinski
Photographs: Reuters/Jim Urquhart
Dominic Cooper as Joe Strummer
The Clash frontman Joe Strummer vanished very intentionally from the public eye in 1982, and this disappearance -- which started off as a publicity stunt but ended up with him actually disappearing and fooling around in France -- is the subject of The Right Profile, a biopic to be directed by Before Sunrise actress Julie Delpy.
Dominic Cooper, who played Milton Greene in My Week With Marilyn, looks set to play Strummer, a rocker who liked a bit of the old ultraviolence.
Image: Dominic Cooper and Joe Strummer
Photographs: Dave Hogan/Getty Images, Chris Moorhouse/Evening Standard/Hulton Archive/Getty Images
Sacha Baron Cohen as Freddie Mercury
In the most spectacular bit of actor-propelled casting, the multitalented comic performer Sacha Baron Cohen will play the legendary lead singer of Queen in a film called Mercury.
The actor wrote to Peter Morgan, the English screenwriter famed for taking pieces of British history and turning them into significant films and plays (The Queen, Frost/Nixon) and asked him to develop the project, and his physical resemblance to Mercury did the rest.
The potential is thrilling.
Image: Sacha Baron Cohen and Freddie Mercury
Photographs: REUTERS/Fred Prouser, Dave Hogan/Getty Images
Angelina Jolie as Gertrude Bell
Often described as the female Lawrence of Arabia, Gertrude Bell worked for British Intelligence during World War I, and wrote about her escapades wherein she aided in the dismantling of the Ottoman Empire and the founding or Iraq.
Admired greatly for her deft diplomacy, Bell would make a compelling subject and the film will be produced by Gladiator director Ridley Scott, who might direct it himself as his next project after the epic Prometheus.
Image: Angelina Jolie and Gertrude Bell
Photographs: Reuters/Charles Platiau, Hulton Archive/Getty Images