Though the anticipated biopic of the psychedelic life of rock legend Jimi Hendrix has already been in production in Dublin, Ireland, with pics released of hip-hop star Andre 3000 in full on hippie gear and a Jheri-curl esque Afro (he's reportedly taken the method actor approach in playing the role), his family continues to disdain the project immeasurably. Its to the point that the film may be without any of the rocker's classic tunes, as the family owned estate, Experience Hendrix LLC, are refusing to let his music to be used for All Is By My Side.
The family released a statement to the press, declaring: "[We have] made it known many times in the past that no such film, were it to include original music or copyrights created by Jimi Hendrix, can be undertaken without its full participation".
Sean McKittrick, a producer of the flick, admits to having never asked the estate, run by Jimi's sister Janie, for permission to use his music, but claims that he hadn't intended on featuring it anyway, which only caused his family to scoff at the whole idea of a biopic. The controversy is similar to that of the Edie Sedgwick film Factory Girl, starring Sienna Miller. In the role of Bob Dylan, an ex-flame of Sedgwick, Hayden Christian had to over-dub his voice post-production in order for the studio to avoid a lawsuit from Dylan who had preferred to not be mentioned whatsoever in the pop-art flick.
In an effort to keep the spirit of the late '60s blues-y rock and soul alive and akin to Hendrix's own music, the producers are opting to use other notable songs of the era with soft rock jams from The Beatles and Muddy Waters, which are still factual moments of his past performance sets, as he sang songs like "Wild Thing" and "Bleeding Heart" at concerts. The fiery decision from the family definitely places a (possible) major pothole in the whole essence of the biopic as what's a Hendrix-centric film without the melodies of some of his most capital records like "Purple Haze" and "All Along the Watchtower"?
Without the consent of his family, the veracity of the movie could be questioned, but with so much information about him present, the storyline of his real life should still be intact. The results will be interesting for any avid fan to watch on the silvers screen and that plan to support the film, as the cult status of one of the greatest guitar players of all time has remained steady since his death in 1970 at the age of 27.
All Is By My Side will focus on his adventures in England between 1966 to '67, and the creation of his breakthrough LP, Are You Experienced? Andre and John Ridley, the director of All Is By My Side, have assuredly shared that the film will be a celebration of how Hendrix became the icon he is today. The studio that is backing the film is aiming for a Sundance Independent Film Festival premiere in 2013.