Musician Biopic Blitz! Timothée Chalamet Bob Dylan Movie Seems To Be On Hold; Wendell Pierce Is Playing B.B. King; Alex Winter's 'Zappa'; Bee Gees Documentary

Musician biopics are nothing new, but we seem to be experiencing an explosion of them lately – primarily because they tend to be Oscar bait. The Academy just can't resist going gaga over watching an actor slap on a wig and pretend to be a famous rock star. So it goes! There are a few different musician biopics and documentaries headed our way, and with them comes the following updates.

Chalamet Bob Dylan

Timothée Chalamet Bob Dylan Biopic On Hold? 

James Mangold is set to direct a Bob Dylan biopic starring internet boyfriend Timothée Chalamet. But now it sounds like the picture might be on hold? At the very least, it's not happening anytime soon. Speaking with Collider, Phedon Papamichael, who is the cinematographer on the upcoming Dylan movie, said:

"We were going to do Bob Dylan with Mangold that didn't happen, with Timothée Chalamet, about going electric in the '60s, and it would have been my third '60s movie in a row." So what now? Well, Papamichael says there is still some hope: "I don't think it's dead, but it's a tough one to pull off in a COVID-era because it's all in small clubs with lots of extras in period costumes, so you've got lots of hair and makeup."

In other words, it could still happen – but don't expect to see Timothée Chalamet blowing into a harmonica anytime soon. Unless he decides to do that for fun and uploads it to social media or something like that.

Wendell Pierce as B.B. King

The Wire actor Wendell Pierce is set to play Blues legend B.B. King – but the circumstances are slightly confusing. Pierce first took to Twitter to announce his casting as B.B. King, but later had to walk it back – sort of. The actor wrote: "The Estate of BB King has requested I clarify the film The Thrill is On is not a biopic in the traditional sense. It is a dramatized version of a real-life friendship story in the spirit of the film Round Midnight. The friendship of 2 musicians, one being the King of the Blues." Why did King's estate make a big deal about Pierce clarifying this? It turns out they're developing a completely separate B.B. King biopic – one that won't, presumably, star Pierce.

As Variety adds: The Thrill Is On is not associated with the B.B. King estate, but the estate is handling "an upcoming biopic of King's life, which is being produced by the estate. Though Benford says King's estate has considered Pierce to play King in the biopic, they are looking at a number of other actors for the role, including Saturday Night Live star Kenan Thompson. A major director is also in talks to helm the upcoming biopic, according to the estate."


When he's not traveling through time with Keanu Reeves, Alex Winter also directs movies. His latest is Zappa, a documentary about legendary musician Frank Zappa. Here's the synopsis:

With unfettered access to the Zappa family trust and all archival footage, ZAPPA explores the private life behind the mammoth musical career that never shied away from the political turbulence of its time. Alex Winter's assembly features appearances by Frank's widow Gail Zappa and several of Frank's musical collaborators including Mike Keneally, Ian Underwood, Steve Vai, Pamela Des Barres, Bunk Gardner, David Harrington, Scott Thunes, Ruth Underwood, Ray White and others.

Zappa will hit select theaters for a one-night-only special event on November 23 followed by a digital and VOD release on November 27.

The Bee Gees: How Can You Mend a Broken Heart

Speaking of documentaries, the Bee Gees have one, too! It's called The Bee Gees: How Can You Mend a Broken Heart, and it comes from director Frank Marshall (yes, that Frank Marshall, of Lucasfilm fame). The doc "chronicles the triumphs and hurdles of brothers Barry, Maurice and Robin Gibb, otherwise known as the Bee Gees. The iconic trio, who found early fame in the 1960s, went on to write over 1,000 songs, including twenty #1 hits throughout their storied career. This film follows the Bee Gee's meteoric rise as they rode the highs of fame and fortune, negotiated the vagaries of the ever-shifting music business and navigated the complexities of working so intimately alongside family. "

Look for it on HBO on December 12.