Hey! Ho! Let's Go! Fox Searchlight Making a Ramones Biopic
by Ethan Anderton
October 2, 2009
Ever since fictional actor Vincent Chase from HBO's "Entourage" lost the chance to be in a biopic about Joey Ramone and his iconic punk rock band of the same name, I realized that I would absolutely love to see one of the most influential bands in rock history up on the big screen. Well it looks like we'll all get the chance as THR's Risky Biz Blog reports that Fox Searchlight is on board for a flick chronicling the musical journeys of The Ramones, with a focus on lead singer Joey Ramone, based on the the memoir I Slept with Joey Ramone set to be published this December. And there's certainly a lot of stories to tell about the punk band.
Along with their punk revolution and success came many issues from fighting between members John Cummings (Johnny), Jeffrey Hyman (Joey), Thomas Erdelyi (Tommy) and Douglas Colvin (Dee-Dee) as well as substance abuse and various other health problems among members. But the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame really gives The Ramones their due when they say:
"The Ramones revitalized rock and roll at one of its lowest ebbs, infusing it with punk energy, brash attitude and a loud, fast new sound. [They] performed 2,263 concerts between their formation in 1974 and final show in Los Angeles on August 6, 1996. They released 21 studio, live and compilation albums over a 20-year period, almost faithfully issuing an album a year. They are now hailed as one of the most influential American bands, and their music reaches more ears today than it did during those hard-working years when they were loudly going about the revolutionary business of reinventing rock and roll."
Searchlight doesn't have a screenwriter or director attached yet (as far as we know). The indie studio has a bit of past experience with musician biopics, having developed and distributed Notorious earlier this year about rapper Notorious B.I.G. (to the tune of $37 million domestically). I'm sure we'll be hearing plenty more about this soon enough, especially with The Beatles / John Lennon biopic Nowhere Boy gaining buzz on the festival circuit. And let's not forget The Runaways biopic. This project has me all sorts of excited, especially when I think about how great the cast could be. At least as long as they don't get Vincent Chase.