Five Biopic Ideas I’d Like to See Play Out in Film

Given how much I enjoyed seeing The Social Network, it got me thinking.  I’m pretty sure I’ve already got a “awesome company movies” post lined up but something else that I thought was pretty cool about the film was that we got some fun interpretations of some pretty influential people:  Mark Zuckerberg and Sean Parker.   Who knows how accurate these portrayals were but it still showed up nicely on film.

And now that I hear Spielberg is going to be tackling Abraham Lincoln I figured I’d come up with my own list of cool biopic ideas for movies.  Granted these are just my own opinions.

Feel free to chime in after you read…..

The Jimi Hendrix Experience

If there’s one musician I’d like to see a biopic about it’s gotta be Jimi Hendrix.  From the fact he died at an early age to his left handed guitar playing, to the partying and sex in the 70s, I don’t think there’s any rock star I’d want chronicled more than Hendrix.  Problem is, who in the world could play him?  Denzel Washington is too old and doesn’t have the frame.    Actually Anthony Mackie (he was in Hurt Locker) might be pretty good.  He’s an up and comer.

The Tesla Effect

Hell we might as well have David Bowie play this role since he already did an awesome job in The Prestige.   But given how influential Nikola Tesla has been in the world of electricity I think we need to see something on the man.  Screw Thomas Edison, he’s boring.  Tesla is way more badass.  Although who could play Tesla in his early years?  Hmmmm.

Magellan Travels the World

We’ve seen like 900 movies about Christopher Columbus but I really haven’t seen much on Magellan.  And given he traveled the entire world I think his story would probably be kind of interesting.  This has Ridley Scott and Russell Crowe written all over it but I have to say Scott’s last few movies haven’t been all that great.   Someone’s got to do it justice.

Steve Jobs Bites into America

OK we’re not counting when Noah Wyle played him in that ridiculous movie Pirates of Silicon Valley.  I want to see a real biopic on Jobs.  You know this guy is a total dick and I’ve love to see him truly portrayed on screen.   Maybe Tom Sizemore?  Just kidding.  Actually I think Tom Cruise might actually make a decent Steve Jobs.

Sir Isaac Newton

If it wasn’t for Yahoo Serious I’d probably put Einstein in here (though a serious movie on him would be kind of cool).  However, as it stands, it’d be cool to see a nice period piece on one of the smartest people to have ever lived.  Anthony Hopkins?

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  1. “Over the Edge of the World” is a really engaging account of Magellan’s circumnavigation of the world. Granted, it’s a book, but it helps prove your point that this would make a great film.

  2. A few thoughts here

    Hendrix- Andre 3000 could pull it off no problem
    Telsa- Jude Law would be perfect
    Magellan- Sean Connery..probably too old at this point
    Isaac Newton- Adrien Brody would be good

    Got me on Jobs…

  3. An interesting list. Magellan definately stands out as the strongest possiblity to me, followed by Hendrix.

    Any of these men’s lives could make a great movie if you found the right narrative framework. However, seeing that scientists lead somewhat cerebral existances, it can be hard to render their accomplishments into cinematic gold.

    If you want some great already made bio-pics, I highly recommend Gandhi, if you haven’t seen it. More obscure, Bob Fosse directed a bio-pic of Lenny Bruce called Lenny. Dustin Hoffman steals the show in that one. I also liked Clint Eastwood’s movie about Charlie Parker called Bird, but that one gets a little long in the tooth unless you’re a jazz fan.

  4. Alfred. Hitchcock.

    His biography reads like a movie script. From the 20’s to the 70’s ha traveled the world and not only met the world’s greatest filmmakers and stars, he helped MAKE most of them. A film on his life would be FULL of opportunity for modern stars to play some the best actors and actresses from Hollywood’s golden age. (Jimmy Stewart, Grace Kelley, Cary Grant, Ingrid Bergman) Plus, Hitchcock was hysterical. His short stories he wrote before got into film making are hilarious. His wit is unmatched.

    I will make an Alfred Hitchcock Bio-pic one day.

  5. I’m representing a historical biographical graphic novel based completely on Tesla (the GOD) and we are in the works for a feature film based off of the graphic novel. We’ve obviously given a lot of thought to who might be a perfect tesla and we have landed on Eric Balfour. We think he would absolutely play an AMAZING Tesla. Yes, Bowie was fantastic, but I think a bit too old at this point. Balfour not only looks like Tesla in an uncanny way, but has the acting chops to make it work.

    Great list of Biopics. It’s time Tesla gets his.

  6. “If it wasn’t for Yahoo Serious I’d probably put Einstein in here (though a serious movie on him would be kind of cool).”

    I haven’t personally watched it, although I would really like to and might just now I’ve been reminded once again, but there is a television film made by the BBC called Einstein and Eddington,

    A tale of how the theory of general relativity was born from two scientists from different sides in World War I.

    Not only does this premise really makes me want to watch it, have a guess who plays Einstein and Eddington? Only the greatest The Doctor that has ever been, David Tennant, as Eddington, and a very underlooked, talented, Gollum-like, Andy Serkis as Albert Einstein.

    Just have a look at the mini-trailer:

  7. couple of things about Hendrix…I dont see his left handed playing being a very compelling plot point. It’s just kind of something he did cause, you know, he was a lefty. Yeah it was interesting that he used right handed guitars but I feel like that would be maybe 2 minutes tops of engaging film. Also the partying and sex in the 70’s…Hendrix died in 1970. He really wasn’t around for the 70’s. I’m not saying a movie about his life done well wouldn’t be interesting but you seem to be more interested in mundane technical aspects of his playing and a decade that he didn’t live through. Also why does him dying early make the biopic any more compelling? You just seem really interested in seeing a biopic about somebody you really aren’t that familiar with. Also Denzel Washington is not the only good black actor in Hollywood.

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