A mini-Sherlock reunion is coming soon to multiplexes around the world, as star Benedict Cumberbatch is set to team up with the series' main director Paul McGuigan on a biography of iconic Beatles’ manager Brian Epstein.
Epstein, who managed the band from 1961-1967 had a colorful personal life. He was a closet homosexual, suffered from a gambling addiction and died from a drug overdose. (So, you know, if anyone was concerned about Cumberbatch possibly playing an upbeat or happy role ever then, hey, crisis averted.) According to The Hollywood Reporter, producers describe the film as the story of a “man who threw the biggest party of the 1960s but ultimately forgot to invite himself.”
Cumberbatch seems to have a knack for playing real people - he’s already done Stephen Hawking and William Pitt and is rumored to be lined up for a crack at Julian Assange – so I expect this, as everything else he generally does, will be pretty flawless. If Sherlock is the only directorial work of McGuigan’s you’ve seen, I’d recommend at least checking out Gangster No. 1 – which, incidentally, is also set in the 1960s and shows off how skillful McGuigan is at both creating an atmosphere and just generally being interesting in the way he frames his shots.
Awkwardly, this particular Epstein film doesn’t have the rights to actually use any Beatles songs. (There’s another similarly themed biopic in the works, only that one’s being produced by Sony, which owns the Lenon/McCartney catalogue.) But, hey, in my opinion, Cumberbatch in the lead role makes up for a lot of shortcomings and if the movie isn’t actually about the band, do we really need to hear She Loves You for the millionth time? Surely not.