Jimi Hendrix is to be played by OutKast’s André 3000 in a new biopic. Despite a prior dispute with the guitarist’s estate, the movie will reportedly begin shooting in Ireland later this month. But it isn’t clear whether the Hendrix estate, controlled by the late guitarist’s sister, is giving permission for the use of Hendrix’s music. For a long time, that sister, who is very religious, has objected to any screenplays or depictions that focus on her brother’s drug use or sexcapades. But a Hendrix movie without drugs or sex would be like a JFK movie without Jackie.
To the surprise of many industry observers, Andre’s movie, “All Is By My Side,” is currently in pre-production, the Irish Film and Television Network reports. André 3000 will spend six weeks at locations in Bray, Dun Laoghaire and Dublin, including the historic John Player Cigarette Factory. The film is to be directed by Three Kings writer John Ridley, who also wrote the screenplay, and deals with Hendrix’s breakthrough in 1966, when he was discovered in a New York club by Linda Keith, then girlfriend of Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards.
Several studios have tried to make Hendrix-related films over the last few years, including a failed project by Paul Greengrass. The Hendrix estate blocked all of these, refusing to license the late musician’s songs. Either now they have had a change of heart, or Ridley’s film isn’t going to use any Hendrix songs.