It seems like anyone who was anyone and had a pulse eventually gets a film made about their life and recent events which have transpired online have made me question this common tradition.
I began to specifically ask “why?” after seeing the “ROBIN” test footage uploaded to YouTube by actor Jamie Costa Monday. In it the talented actor who, to be clear, I have no ill will towards, performs a scene as Robin Williams out of a hypothetical biopic about the late icon’s life. It has made the rounds online, elicited responses from Williams’ friends and family and while it would be nice to see a version of him brighten all our lives again, it is just not something we need at all.
If I want to see a Robin Williams performance, I can put on any of his movies from his storied career. If I want to learn more about his life, I can look to the documentary made about him and the same can be said for others who have been either infamous, iconic or beloved in some form.
Somehow in 2021 we are STILL getting movies about American serial killer Ted Bundy. The Netflix works which included a documentary and an underrated performance from Zac Efron apparently were not enough. Neither was the 2002 film, the 2003 film, the 2004 film in which he is played by Cary Elwes or the other documentary series one can watch via Amazon Prime.
If grisly murderers are not your thing there is still apparently gold to be mined from the vein of Elvis Presley and his mediocre career. The man whose foundations are what manufactured singers and carefully managed movie stars stand on today has a film coming in 2022 about his relationship with his manager, previously had his meeting with former President Richard Nixon touched on in 2016 and like many got his own mediocre television miniseries in the early 00’s.
Am I the only one tired of this?
Instead of picking over the bleached and in many cases bloated corpses of famous folks who have come before, the entertainment industry should give this genre the sore kick in the pants it needs and turn to adaptations of lesser-known figures. I would watch a story about Jack Kirby’s life, the adventures of Bass Reeves or Frank Fiegel before ever revisiting the wells cited above.
Let Williams, Bundy and Presley rest. We know all there is to know about them and would be well-served as a society in seeing what we can discover about ourselves in smaller legends.
Top Image: Jamie Costa as Robin Williams in “ROBIN Test Footage scene”. Via YouTube.