[dropcap]T[/dropcap]he much-touted Brian Wilson biopic, Love & Mercy, looks to be gathering more steam, with John Cusack now in talks to play an older version of the Beach Boys maestro.
Back in January, There Will Be Blood’s Paul Dano was set in stone to play a youthful Wilson, but more senior cast members were still some way from being confirmed. It led many to wonder whether the whole thing was just a case of summer dreams – you’ll also be pleased to know that’s an end to the puns!
Wilson himself will no doubt be available for comment on the addition of Cusack, if and when the High Fidelity actor is confirmed. In the meantime, he has been positively smitten with plans for the film, as well as the inclusion of Dano: “I am thrilled that Paul Dano has signed on to play me during one of my most creative explosions and most fulfilling musical times in my career. I still can’t believe how cool it is that my life will be portrayed on the big screen… It makes me feel so humble. I can’t wait to see it with a full tub of buttered popcorn.”
The movie will chart Wilson’s life from the beginning of the Beach Boys’ success story, which came to an anti-climactic end with the cancellation of the album Smile in 1967. The focus will then be placed on Wilson’s titanic struggle with drug addiction and mental illness. Smile did finally see the light of day, at the Royal Festival Hall, London, as recently as 2004, paving the way for a revival in Wilson’s fortunes, both musically and in his private life.
Directing duties will be taken on by Bill Pohlad, who secured the rights to the story, Wilson and his wife Melinda. He will be ably assisted by ER producer John Wells, with the screenplay being written by Oren Moverman. The latter is no stranger to music-themed biopics, having previously been involved with the Bob Dylan story I’m Not There.
The project is now all but underway, which, considering it was first announced back in January 2012, has been some time coming. Like Smile before it, however, it should be well worth the wait.