Metallica and Queen films move forward

Posted by David Konow

Fans of Metallica and long time TG readers know this summer the band is going to be taking one of the biggest risks of its career: Sinking $20 million of their hard earned money into Through the Never, a 3D concert film that hits theaters August 9.

Like Led Zeppelin’s The Song Remains the Same, this will be a combination of live footage and a dramatic story weaving in and out of it.

There’s hasn’t been a big hit rock movie in a long time, and the Metallica fans should be out for this one in full force, but could it help bring the rock film genre back?

It’s hard to tell right now, but instead of just a straight ahead concert film, Dane DeHaan, an actor who is in Never, told Blabbermouth it will be “almost like a concert movie meets The Wall.”

DeHaan had featured roles in Chronicle, and the HBO series In Treatment. In Never, DeHaan is reportedly playing a character named Trip and he told Collider, “There’s this narrative that ties together all the footage.” It will be “first of all, really rock and roll and really Metallica for lack of a better word…But I basically go on this trip as a roadie for the band and I pretty much have to go through hell and back to take it back to them, all of this is going on during the concert, so it all ties together really kind of beautifully and uniquely.”
As Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich told Classic Rock magazine, “There’s a lot in this film that does not take place onstage. The major difference is that the stuff that takes place offstage in the Metallica movie does not feature any members of Metallica. It’s two separate worlds – a Metallica show and a story that unfolds in a parallel universe – at some point they intertwine.” 
While Metallica’s movie will be out this summer, a Freddie Mercury biopic has been in the works for a while now. You often hear news about a lot of rock movies that never get made, including the many Janis Joplin, Hendrix and Bob Marley biopics that can’t get out of development hell.

But now Vulture tells us that Tom Hooper, the director of The King’s Speech and Les Miserables may direct the Freddie film with Sacha Baron Cohen in the starring role.

Rock biopics are hard to pull off, especially when we know our favorite rock stars so well, and seeing actors trying to play them without sliding into caricature is really not easy. Along with Mercury’s songwriting genius, he was great at being pompy and campy in a very fun way, and it won’t be easy to recreate that on screen. 
Cohen’s a great choice to play Freddie, but whomever ultimately tries to direct the Freddie biopic definitely has their work cut out of them. Still, we’d love to see a movie that does justice to the man and his gifts without coming off like a VH1 TV movie, and whoever’s ready to tackle it, we certainly wish them luck.