9 People Who Could Play The King In New Elvis Biopic
Tuesday, Paste reported that director John Scheinfeld will be adapting Elvis: Still Taking Care of Business, the memoir of Elvis Presley confidante Sonny West, who was one of the King's bodyguards for 16 years. West was a member of the "Memphis Mafia," Elvis' merry band of bone-breakers and yes-men who made sure the singer's every whim was sated.
Scheinfeld, who also lensed the excellent rock docs The U.S. vs. John Lennon and Who is Harry Nilsson (And Why Is Everybody Talkin' About Him?) plans to turn the book into a narrative feature, not a documentary. Those close to the picture, still in the earliest development stages, say that it will be similar to recent Oscar darling The King's Speech, showing the inner workings of the Graceland regime, but focusing on the West/Presley relationship.
Now, of course, casting has not begun yet, but Rocks Off immediately put on his casting director cap Tuesday afternoon, with the help of our Twitter followers. If the book covers the 16 years before the King's death, 1961-77, then you can only imagine the amount of characters that will make appearances: Priscilla Presley, Richard Nixon, various girlfriends, Col. Tom Parker, and celebrities galore covered.
For Priscilla? Well, we are a little too partial to brunettes with tall hair and dark eye makeup, so we can't begin to fathom (Emma Stone) who could play one of the most beautiful women Elvis ever knew (Megan Fox), but we are sure that the filmmakers (Evan Rachel Wood) have plenty of names in mind.
Simon Pegg is our pick for Red West, another member of the Memphis Mafia. Beau Bridges played Col. Parker quite a few years back for a TV flick, but now we could see Bristish actor Timothy Spall as the conniving Dutch-born manager. You don't recognize the name, but once you see the face you will more than likely agree. He was in Rock Star, Sweeney Todd and rat-faced turncoat Wormtail in the Harry Potter series.
OK, no one cares about those folks - we are here to talk about an actor playing Presley in his most private moments away from cameras and fans, the Elvis that his inner circle knew. The filmmakers need someone who can progress through those 16 years without making the character into a caricature: A bloated, slurring, hairy, rich-as-sin good ol' boy, but a complex, obsessive, talented, rich-as-sin good ol' boy.
It's obviously a role that needs to be knocked out of the park, and in the right hands, it could be awards bait.