And Finally Artist News

Greatest Showman director to make Robbie Williams biopic

By | Published on Wednesday 24 February 2021

Robbie Williams

The next film project for ‘The Greatest Showman’ director Michael Gracey will be a musical biopic of Robbie Williams. The movie will follow the “superhero narrative” of Williams’ life “in a really original way”.

“Unlike some people who were born prodigies or musical geniuses and you follow the narrative of the world catching up to their brilliance, this isn’t that story”, Gracey tells Deadline. “Robbie is that everyman, who just dreamed big and followed those dreams, and they took him to an incredible place”.

“Because of that, his is an incredibly relatable story”, he goes on. “He’s not the best singer, or dancer, and yet, he managed to sell 80 million records worldwide”.

“You can relate to the guy who doesn’t see himself as having any extraordinary talent, even though, of course, he does”, he goes on. “What he did have is the will, vision and confidence to say, I’m going to pursue my dream. For us as an audience, it’s a window into the world of, what if we just went for it and chased that impossible dream that so many of us put to one side”.

Gracey spent time with Williams to learn about his story, and the former Take That star will also record new versions of his songs for the film.

“All Robbie’s songs will be re-sung, for the emotion of the moment”, says Gracey. “If in his life he’s in the depths of despair, he’s not going to sing a song [with] cabaret flamboyant showmanship; it’s going to be broken, a cappella, stripped down, because that’s where he is emotionally. In moments of pure joy, you’ll get songs sung in this whirlwind of hysteria”.

“So essentially, every song in the film, Robbie will sing, but it will be performed for the emotion of that moment, and that scene”, he adds.

As for whether Williams himself will appear in the movie, Gracey remains tight-lipped, only saying: “How we [will] represent Robbie in the film, that bit is top secret. I want to do this in a really original way … It’s so important when [the audience] watch this story, and look at the screen, that they literally think, I’ve never seen this before”.

“All I can say is, the approach is top secret, but the goal is to generate that feeling [of wonder]”, he says. “It’s this fantastical story, and I want to represent it in its harsh reality all the way to these moments of pure fantasy”.

The as-yet-untitled film is set to begin production this summer.