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Strider

Warner Bros. Aborted Led Zeppelin Movie Project

54 posts in this topic

I was at the L.A. premiere of the new Tom Hardy film "Legend" earlier tonight and the director, Brian Helgeland, revealed an interesting tidbit about a Led Zeppelin movie project in 1998. After the Q & A I had an opportunity outside the theatre to quiz him more directly on the subject.

After his success with writing the screenplay to "L.A. Confidential", Warner Brothers was keen on making a movie about Led Zeppelin and sent Brian Helgeland to catch up with Jimmy Page and Robert Plant on their 1998 tour in New York. Jimmy was interested but Robert wanted no part of it. Brian saw the July 16 Madison Square Garden and July 18 Continental Airline Arena shows, but could never get Robert to speak to him. Without Robert's cooperation, there was no way Brian could write a decent screenplay. That put the kibbosh on any Led Zeppelin film and Warner Brothers pulled the plug.

But Brian did get to hang out with P & P manager Bill Curbishley, and it was when Brian noticed that one of Bill's fingers was missing that Bill told him about the Krays. That led to Brian researching the Kray brothers and reading John Pearson's book "The Profession of Violence: The Rise and Fall of the Kray Twins", which lead to him making "Legend".

Incidentally, Bill Curbishley tells people the Krays cut off his finger but that's apparently not true. But he was a pall-bearer at Reggie Kray's funeral.

Edited by Strider

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^ If some bloke cut off my finger I sure as hell would not show up for his funeral unless it was to shit in his casket. Can't wait to see Legend though, Tom Hardy is great, they Kray's, not so much.

I really can't blame Robert for not wanting a LZ film as he would have to revisit some very traumatic experiences in his life, and, have such events out there for everyone to see...in blazing IMAX to boot. Its not like they would focus on the music and the creativity, it would be pure sensationalism, pure Hammer of the Gods BS otherwise Hollywierd would not be interested. 

However, I would love to see some great indie director put a nice LZ film together which would focus on the music and the music industry, but I doubt that would happen.

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Thanks for posting. Interesting. I understand Robert not giving the go ahead for the project.
 I'm surprised Jimmy would've been keen on doing a movie about the band though. Then
again knowing Jimmy, the movie wouldn't have told us anything the band didn't want fans knowing.
Mystery, secrets...questions...followed with cryptic answers. Ah yes indeed that is how my
favourite band rolls. :)

.
 

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^ If some bloke cut off my finger I sure as hell would not show up for his funeral unless it was to shit in his casket. Can't wait to see Legend though, Tom Hardy is great, they Kray's, not so much.

I really can't blame Robert for not wanting a LZ film as he would have to revisit some very traumatic experiences in his life, and, have such events out there for everyone to see...in blazing IMAX to boot. Its not like they would focus on the music and the creativity, it would be pure sensationalism, pure Hammer of the Gods BS otherwise Hollywierd would not be interested. 

However, I would love to see some great indie director put a nice LZ film together which would focus on the music and the music industry, but I doubt that would happen.

When your subject matter is a legendary band like Led Zeppelin, it's better to focus on a specific episode in the band's history.  I think a savvy, sensitive director could make intriguing film about the trip to Morocco that Robert Plant and Jimmy Page took in 1974.  According to Plant, it inspired his lyrics for Kashmir.  You have a travel flick, buddy film and spiritual quest all rolled into one. 

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When your subject matter is a legendary band like Led Zeppelin, it's better to focus on a specific episode in the band's history.  I think a savvy, sensitive director could make intriguing film about the trip to Morocco that Robert Plant and Jimmy Page took in 1974.  According to Plant, it inspired his lyrics for Kashmir.  You have a travel flick, buddy film and spiritual quest all rolled into one. 

Hey, it could be an updated version of Road to Morocco, Jimmy would be Bing and Robert would be Bob. I wonder who would play the Dorothy Lamour role?

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Hey, it could be an updated version of Road to Morocco, Jimmy would be Bing and Robert would be Bob. I wonder who would play the Dorothy Lamour role?

Good question?  Did Page and Plant travel alone to Morocco or did they take female companions with them?

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Hey, it could be an updated version of Road to Morocco, Jimmy would be Bing and Robert would be Bob. I wonder who would play the Dorothy Lamour role?

Miss Pamela? Lori Mattix? :P

 

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Miss Pamela? Lori Mattix? :P

 

I believe Mr. Page may have had some problems getting Lori out of the country in 74'. "Honest Mr. Customs Officer, this fine, young lady is my, um, niece."

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I find some of the ideas presented for a movie interesting, but as far as using actors, NO WAY. All the

members even slightly JPJ are so idiosyncratic in appearance and character it would be like watching

a cartoon, or worse. Sorry Johnny Depp or whomever. Do not touch the golden flame.

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Hmmm...sounded like an interesting project. Too bad it didn't see the light of day. Hypothetically, I don't know who will play Robert, JPJ, Jimmy and Bonzo, Peter Grant or the tons of groupies, hangers-on, etc. but I can definitely envision a role for Mr. Cheech and Mr. Chong! I think they'll be as funny as ever, even as old guys! B) 

Edited by Kiwi_Zep_Fan87

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Didn't they already make a film about Led Zeppelin?  I have the vaguest memory of seeing one years ago... what was it called now, The Song  something-or-other The Same, I don't know, maybe I just imagined it, it had some guy dressed in a hood waving a glo-stick around for a bit,,, ring any bells, anyone?

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There was suppose to be a Peter Grant movie,years ago and days of old.

You're correct, Malcom McLaren (Sex Pistols manager) was pursuing that project for a while...

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You're correct, Malcom McLaren (Sex Pistols manager) was pursuing that project for a while...

I would still like to see that.And a LZ film,warts and all,...

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I would like to see a Hollywood movie based on Led Zeppelin but I cannot envision a movie about Led Zeppelin's entire 12 year career fitting into the 2 or 3 hour movie format.  Even if such a movie left out certain times and events, I just don't see how it would work. 

Based on this, I don't ever think that Hollywood will ever make a movie about Led Zeppelin.  With or without Robert Plant's cooperation. 

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I would like to see a Hollywood movie based on Led Zeppelin but I cannot envision a movie about Led Zeppelin's entire 12 year career fitting into the 2 or 3 hour movie format.  Even if such a movie left out certain times and events, I just don't see how it would work. 

Based on this, I don't ever think that Hollywood will ever make a movie about Led Zeppelin.  With or without Robert Plant's cooperation. 

I suppose something based on a specific Point of Zeppelin's career would be better.

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Miss Pamela? Lori Mattix? :P

 

 I was referring to Maureen Plant and Charlotte Martin.

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I think the music would be lost in all the hedonistic issues any film would focus on. Just like many of the books.

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Strider, I just saw this story reposted on facebook.  You are credited as the writer :)

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Strider, I just saw this story reposted on facebook.  You are credited as the writer :)

Are you kidding? Oy vey. If I had known that would happen, I would have tidied up the writing for public consumption.

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Within a handful of posts, the topic descended down the slippery groupie path, and that's here, a place where Zep is revered. Imagine what their legendary debauchery would turn into in the groping hands of Hollyweird honchos. That's not to say I prefer a whitewashed version, but you can easily see how the focus would be magnified away from the essential which is the music, and because there's no denying it went in hand with the mayhem, the scales would tip in favour of the salacious. And while I like a bawdy tale, the music would never be done justice, because let's face it, nobody does Zep like Zep. Robert was right to walk away, but I'm surprised that Jimmy was agreeable given his secretive ways.

There's something to the mystery after all; the music is always seducing, and that is ever accessible. 

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Are you kidding? Oy vey. If I had known that would happen, I would have tidied up the writing for public consumption.

I wouldn't worry, it read well :)

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The toughest thing is to sell a screenplay in Follywood and get it produced.What the heck is Percy afraid of?

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The toughest thing is to sell a screenplay in Follywood and get it produced.What the heck is Percy afraid of?

A big-screen adaptation of Hammer of the Gods... that's what, and who can blame him for not wanting any part in that?  Percy knows EXACTLY what kind of film it would have ended up being, imagine The Wolf of Wall Street  with longer hair...

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