It’s happening. Steven Morrissey’s life is being painted up on the silver screen: the Manchester-based production company Honlodge have announced that development on what is described as a “love letter” to the former Smiths frontman has begun, with filming due to commence at the end of the year.
He’s certainly a man with an intriguing life – and rather helpfully, he’s just published a 600-page memoir, which I would imagine will prove rather helpful to writer and director Mark Gill. Gill has previously worked on the Oscar-nominated short The Voorman Problem, which I’d really recommend – but I highly doubt any Morrissey film is going to be as quirky and light-hearted.
Morrissey’s early life, however, does seem to be almost designed to be perfect dramatic film material. Struggling with depression from an early age, Gill won’t have to Hollywood-up any of the details, which might make for a refreshing change. Born in inner Manchester, raised to an uncreative family and finding solace in pop music of the time, you can almost see it playing out on the screen right now. Perhaps a big-eyed, profound-pouting Andrew Garfield might slowly begin to ‘find himself’ through music and meeting Johnny Marr.
In any case, it’ll certainly be intriguing to follow – a man as controversial as Morrissey (who compared a seal cull to the Holocause the other day) is always fascinating to see on the big screen. In all honesty though, can you really see anyone conjuring up his controversy, strength and individuality as well as the man himself? Well, there’s an idea.