44 years after the death of the American singer-songwriter Janis Lyn Joplin, who died of overdose at the age 27, the biopic of her life has been, finally, defined. It remained on standby for years because of problems related to difficulty of finding a director and a team of scriptwriters. Its protagonist, the American actress, born in 1974 in Italy, Amy Adams, will bring the singer on the big screen with the Canadian writer-director Jean-Marc Vallee who has achieved worldwide success with the film "Dallas Buyers Club".
The movie will be entitled "Janis Joplin: Get It While You Can" and will be shot in San Francisco in the mid-2015.
October 4, 1970 : the most important voice of blues-rock history is found dead on the floor, beside her bed, in a motel room in Hollywood, 16 days after the death of Jimi Hendrix. According to the autopsy an overdose of heroin killed her.
The body of "Pearl" was cremated at Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery and her ashes were scattered into the Pacific Ocean.
Born in Port Arthur, Texas, on January 19, 1943, Janis made friend with a group of outcasts, one of whom had albums by blues artists, whom influenced her decision to become a singer even if she already was a great painter.
She became known at the end of sixties as lead singer of the "Big Brother and the Holding Company" and, continuing as a solo artist with some backing groups, today "The Queen of Psychedelic Soul" is remembered thanks to her interpretations, really intense, of some songs like "Me and Bobby McGee", "Piece Of My Heart", "Summertime" and "Cry Baby".
Joplin was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1995, and was given a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2005.
Together with Jimi Hendrix, Brian Jones and Jim Morrison, she is often remembered by the journalistic expression, the so-called "The curse of J27", which refers to those artists who, apart from being dead at age 27, they also have in common the letter J as initial of their name or surname.
In 1991 is released "The Doors", a biopic directed by Oliver Stone, based on the life of James Douglas Morrison, one of the greatest singers in the rock history, shot twenty years after his death.
The leader of The Doors, after a life full of all kinds of excesses, dies July 3, 1971 in Paris, at the age 27. The causes of his death are still unknown. Pamela Carson, his companion, said only to have found him dead in the bathtub. The coffin was already closed when friends arrived in Paris. No one, except Pam, never saw the corpse and the autopsy was never done. The medical certificate indicated only a generic "natural death" for cardiac arrest.
Today his myth and his grave at the Pere Lachaise cemetery of Paris attract thousands of visitors and tourists.
But the film's depiction of Morrison was not well received by his close friends, his family and me. In my opinion, but also according to Ray Manzarek, the keyboard player of The Doors, did not represented Morrison very well. The poetic and witty side of the singer was very neglected and in the film emerges an image of him more importantly as a crazy and a drunkard, even if the interpretation of the actor Val Kilmer was truly great in the appearance, in the movements and in the reinterpretation of some songs of the band.
"Stoned", also known as "The Wild and Wicked World of Brian Jones," is a 2005 film, directed by Stephen Woolley, centered on the life of ex guitarist and multi-instrumentalist of the Rolling Stones, Brian Jones and that, although it has had a limited release, has got a major success in the United States.
Brian Jones, founder of the Rolling Stones, from which he was excluded in 1968 for his drug dependence, on July 3, 1969, is found dead, motionless, on the bottom of his swimming pool at his home in England. His girlfriend, Anna Wohlin, was sure that he was still alive when they took him out of the water, thinking to feel his pulse. However, when the doctors arrived, it was too late and Brian was declared dead on the spot for "Death by accident".
For Anna, instead, Brian was murdered. In fact this film, as well as representing the use of alcohol and drugs by the guitarist and his relationships with Anita Pallenberg and Anna Wohlin, it is based precisely on the fictitious story that Jones was murdered by Frank Thorogood, a builder that Jones would employed to renovate his house.
"Jimi: All Is by My Side" is a movie of 2013, written and directed by John Ridley, starring André 3000 in the role of Jimi Hendrix.
The film, based on real interviews and archival material, retraces, however, only one year of the life of Jimi, from the encounter, in 1966, with her friend and mentor Linda Keith, until the day before the unforgettable exhibition in Monterey in 1967, where the musician of Seattle, set fire to his guitar.
On the morning of September 18, 1970, Hendrix is found dead in the apartment that he had rented in London at the Samarkand Hotel. Even his death is not clear. The most popular version tells that he suffocated in his own vomit after a cocktail of alcohol and tranquilizers. It isn't clear also if the guitarist was found already dead or if he was still alive when the ambulance arrived.
Today Hendrix is remembered for his performance, at the close of the Woodstock festival of 1969, while he plays the American national anthem, for his help to popularize the use of a wah-wah pedal in mainstream rock and because he was the first artist to use stereophonic phasing effects in music recordings.
Later, after the death of other two artists, Kurt Cobain, who died in 1994 at age 27, and Amy Winehouse, who died in 2011 at age 27, the expression "The curse of J27" becomes "Club of 27".
In 2005 is released "Last Days", an American drama film directed, produced, and written by Gus Van Sant, inspired by the last days and the tragic death of the Nirvana's leader, Kurt Cobain, who was found dead, on April 8, 1994, at his home in Seattle, victim of what was, officially, a suicide by a self-inflicted shotgun wound to the head.
But this movie received negative reviews for many reasons, above all because Cobain hadn't spent his "last days" in that way, the characters have fake names or keep the name of the actors who play them and, even if it's based on the life of Kurt Cobain, in the film there aren't Nirvana's songs.
Some years before, in the 1998, with the documentary "Kurt & Courtney", the filmmaker Nick Broomfield has investigated about the claim that his wife Courtney Love had offered $50,000 to kill Cobain. But Broomfield felt he had not uncovered enough evidence to conclude the existence of a conspiracy, in fact, in an interview, he said that, for him, Cobain had committed suicide.
So, the fans of the grunge singer are still waiting for the real and the first official documentary dedicated to their idol, "Montage of Heck" that, after the approval of his heirs, the wife Courtney Love and the daughter Frances Bean who will be the executive producer, it will be directed by Brett Morgen.
Morgen has had a chance to read pages of his journals, drafts of songs and poems, short stories, but also sketches for the realization of paintings and sculptures.
He also had the opportunity to watch fragments with audio-video demos, bootlegs, images filmed with his family, in the backstage of concerts, during the rehearsals and in the recording studio.
In closing, we are also waiting for the film about the last cursed artist, the english singer and songwriter Amy Jade Winehouse who died, of accidental alcohol poisoning, on July 2011.
With unpublished footages about a life lived to the fullest, between alcohol and drugs, the director Asif Kapadia, known for the documentary "Senna", will show us aspects never revealed about the huge talent of Amy Winehouse.