Elizabeth Taylor, Linda Lovelace, Janis Joplin: What's With The Double Biopics?
With the release of photos from the new Liz Taylor biopic, Burton and Taylor, starring Helena Bonham Carter and Dominic West, we here at Bustle started to think about the strange yet constant coincidence of dual (and dueling) biopics. Has the world already forgotten Liz & Dick, the Lifetime movie disaster in which Lindsay Lohan more or less played herself with black hair and an occasional British accent?
This seems to be a trend in Hollywood: Any biopic must be followed shortly by another biopic…about the same person. For whatever reason, Hollywood believes that if works once, it'll be even better the second time, because that's always worked really well for them (translation: every American adaptation of a Japanese horror film, like ever). Here are some biopics so nice they made 'em twice:
Capote and Infamous
This double biopic is odd — it's a story of a man following a real story to write a semi-fictional story... and it's been told twice. Capote came out first, to critical acclaim (plus, who in the world doesn't love Philip Seymour Hoffman?), but it's been said that had Infamous come out first, it might have won awards instead. All I know is that Toby Jones' face weirds me out, so I guess that's the first vote cast.
Liz & Dick and Taylor and Burton
Although Taylor and Burton is still in production, I don't think there's any question as to which will be better, seeing as Helena Bonham Carter could beat out Lindsay while playing Lindsay playing Liz Taylor. This confidence in the second biopic is due in part to the fact that Liz & Dick was produced by Lifetime, whereas Taylor and Burton will be made by the BBC. The other part is that Lindsay Lohan was in the first version, which means you know Lifetime wasn't striving for accuracy, or anything else really.
The Girl & Hitchcock
Both were also released to critical acclaim, and what is most interesting is that these two biopics are somehow complimentary. Hitchcock is a bit more insouciant, but perhaps less factual, whereas The Girl sticks to the facts, but loses the suspense — something Hitchcock himself would have disapproved of mightily. They represent different sides of Hitchcock, as well as being centered about two different movies, The Birds and Psycho. I'm going to go out there and say it's worth watching both, although it's worth noting that Toby Jones has already been in two biopics centered around an artist's obsessive tendencies on this list. Do I smell a follow up article in the air?
The Anna Nicole Story (Both)
This might seem confusing, but there are actually two biopics, both called The Anna Nicole Smith Story, and you should 400 percent definitely see both. Her life is a hot mess and you will laugh, cry and lose 10 pounds. 'Nuff said. If you aren't convinced, let me just add that she was in the video for "Kanye's Workout Plan," and if that isn't random and intriguing enough, nothing ever will be.
The Fifth Beatle (not made) & Unnamed Brian Epstein Biopic
The second project will be backed by Tom Hanks and although neither have been made yet (do I sense a pattern here?), the Tom Hanks version will star Benedict Cumberbatch as Epstein, and I will back anything with Benedict, literally anything. That said, The Fifth Beatle has pinned down the copyrights to a lot of Lennon and McCartney's songs, so this biopic competition might be a real show down.
Lovelace and Inferno
Again we have two biopics that have yet to come out — Do I sense a SECOND follow up article about how biopics are like God, ever present but completely intangible? PERHAPS. There are clips of Lovelace online but no official trailer, and there are whisperings online that Inferno might never come to fruition, although I'll be the first to say I'm ready to see Malin Akerman naked in every movie ever. Verdict is still out on these two, but I personally love movies about porn, so I'm excited for both, let the perviness continue.
Greetings from Tim Buckley & Unnamed Jeff Buckley Biopic (with Copyrights)
I wish I could say more about the second biopic, but all I know is that theoretically, it exists. Greetings from Tim Buckley has been dubiously recieved by critics. It has yet to come out but the fact that it start Penn Badgley of Gossip Girl appears to be a hump(hrey, bwahahaha) that many cannot get over.
My Week with Marilyn and Blonde
My Week with Marilyn was pretty good. Michelle Williams was impressive but at the end of the day. But no one does Marilyn like the lady did herself. It would take many more barbiturates than Michelle probably had available to be on Marilyn's level. Blonde looks extremely promising, with the talented Naomi Watts playing Monroe, but again, Marilyn has left big shoes to fill, and an even bigger bra size. The world has yet to tire of Marilyn Monroe, hopefully this will parlay itself into an exciting biopic.