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Rolling Stones biopic to focus on making of Exile on Main Street

Downton Abbey director Andy Goddard has signed on to helm the picture

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If you’re going to make a biopic about a musician or a band, the best way to go about it is by focusing on a specific time or era. Rather than capturing an entire history — which, let’s be honest, is pretty much impossible — a snapshot offers a more realistic opportunity to appropriately frame the story with the utmost patience. Bill Pohlad’s Love and Mercy accomplished this task for Brian Wilson last year, and so did Robert Budreau with his recent Chet Baker portrait, Born to Be Blue.

Now it’s time for The Rolling Stones.

As Deadline reports, Virgin Produced, City Entertainment, KippSter Entertainment, and The Gotham Group have all united to adapt Robert Greenfield’s 2008 autobiography, Exile on Main Street: A Season in Hell with the Rolling Stones. Virgin Produced snagged the rights to the book years ago — Brandon and Philip Murphy have since written the screenplay — but now it’s finally coming to fruition. Already, they’ve tagged Downton Abbey director Andy Goddard to helm the film.

And yes, it’s exactly the type of focus a historic band like the Stones warrants. Here’s the book’s official synopsis:

“Recorded during the blazing hot summer of 1971 at Villa Nellcôte, Keith Richards’s seaside mansion in southern France, Exile on Main Street has been hailed as one of the greatest rock records of all time. Yet its improbable creation was difficult, torturous…and at times nothing short of dangerous. In self-imposed exile, the Stones-along with wives, girlfriends, and an unrivaled crew of hangers-on-spent their days smoking, snorting, and drinking whatever they could get their hands on, while at night, Villa Nellcôte’s basement studio became the crucible in which creative strife, outsized egos, and all the usual byproducts of the Stones’ legendary hedonistic excess fused into something potent, volatile, and enduring. Here, for the first time, is the season in hell that produced Exile on Main Street.”

Currently, they’re looking to cast Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, though we wouldn’t be surprised if James Jagger scores the role as his pop. He was pretty exceptional on HBO’s Vinyl, and their resemblance is uncanny. As for Richards, we’re drawing a blank, but Game of Thrones star Alfie Allen wouldn’t be too bad a choice. (It’s all in the jaw.) Of course, the most obvious name would be Johnny Depp, but he’s too old and … well, let’s just leave it at that.

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