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Andrew Haigh to make Alexander McQueen biopic

Murtada here with the biopic news of the week.

McQueen at 2006 Met Gala with Sarah Jessica ParkerAfter 45 Years I’d watch whatever Andrew Haigh decides to do next. His follow-up choice though would be exciting even in a vacuum; without knowing any of his previous films. Haigh is going to make a biopic of the late fashion designer Alexander McQueen (1969-2010). The movie will be based in part on the biography Alexander McQueen: Blood Beneath The Skin, by Andrew Wilson, which was published in the UK last year.

McQueen had a fascinating life which could make for a great film in Haigh's hands. Growing up in a London council flat, his talent took him from Savile Row to Givenchy to his own eponymous design house that continues to thrive. Alongside John Galliano, he was dubbed fashion’s "British enfant terribles". Carrying on the tradition of designers like Jean Paul Gaultier who went against the norm and shocked the surprisingly staid fashion establishment.

Who should be cast after the jump......

Knowing how good Haigh is with thorny relationships whether loving or not, the meat of this movie might be McQueen’s relationship with his mother. McQueen took his own life just a few days after his mother passed away from cancer in 2010.

But how will they re-create the fashion and the beauty? Besides his gorgeous designs, McQueen was known for bold, dramatic and sometimes controversial catwalk presentations. It can be very hard to cinematically render fashion. For instance Bertrand Bonello’s Saint Laurent was criticized in some quarters, for distorting YSL’s fashion legacy. In part that was because they didn’t have the rights to the designs. Let’s hope Haigh has obtained those rights.

I asked on Twitter who should be cast in the lead role. The responses were interesting. Tom Hardy (he can approximate the look), Russell Tovey (he’s already worked with Haigh), Dane DeHaan (has the right intensity but would require quite the physical transformation). An inspired suggestion was a young Toby Jones!! Other characters from McQueen’s life who might appear in the movie are his muses Isabella Blow and Kate Moss.

Who would you cast as Alexander McQueen? As Blow or Moss?

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Reader Comments (36)

Oh, Yes! YES!

Russell Tovey, please. Hardy is in everything. Variety is my motto for 2016.

January 21, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

As Kate Moss? Can Cara Delevingne act?

January 21, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterPaul Outlaw

Daisy Ridley for Kate Moss though she looks nothing like her.

January 21, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterRami

Russell Tovey. now that i've read it, i can't unsee it.

i can't wait for this. HAIGH is such a strong director. My only worry is his repeated statements about not wanting his films to be "beautiful" and thus distracting from the emotions. A fashion biopic needs to make room for spectacle visuals... at least on occasion

January 21, 2016 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

I'm totally on the Tom Hardy train. He could easily pull this off, plus, for reasons I can't seem to articulate at the moment, this seems right up his alley.

Plus, YES on a McQueen biopic. I hope they will also have access to his collection.

January 21, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterDerreck.

I'd cast Charlie Hunnam

January 21, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterLuis

Before you ever got to the paragraph about casting I had already seen Russell Tovey in the pictures. Gain a few pounds and he'd be the spitting image.

Funny how SAINT LAURENT didn't have access to his real designs and yet it was not only the better of the two YSL biopics, but also the fashion runway sequences were much better.

January 21, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterGlenn Dunks

This is a dream! I'd donate to this production for Tom Hardy to play him. He has so much untapped sensitivity that would be absolutely perfect for McQueen. It would be a nice contrast to the brooding, hyper-macho roles people are starting to associate with him, too.

I've never been overly impressed with Tovey's acting chops on Looking.

January 21, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterSean Diego

Cast Tilda, please.

January 21, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterTyler

Tyler - YES. I change my vote.

January 21, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterSean Diego

That 'Saint Laurent' movie lacked so much style, I'm hoping if the McQueen estate approves the project they'll grant them access to their archives. This movie will need the clothes! But you know me, I'd been perfectly happy with a documentary about the epic McQueen exhibit the Met held after his death.

Also, let's dreamcast John Galliano! I say Adrien Brody.

Sean Diego: did you see 'The Drop'? Hardy was so perfect there, and the antithesis of macho brooding.

January 21, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterJose

I want Helena Bonham Carter or Lesley Manville for the Isabella Blow part. Isabella Blow was equally as complicated as McQueen. The role would have a lot of Oscar potential.

Felicity Jones would be a great Kate Moss.

January 21, 2016 | Unregistered Commenterdela

As someone who's a HUGE fan of McQueen, I'm extremely curious to see how this plays out. Surprised to see it generate interest so soon, frankly. He's a designer that could stand to be reexamined in a few decades, not six years after his last show.

Haigh is a good, solid director and I wouldn't be surprised to see him pick Tovey to play McQueen (for a variety of reasons) but this would be a real coup for Tom Hardy, I would think. Plus, he's a better actor~

Have Björk play herself since she was a close friend and hasn't aged in 30 years. And Sandy Powell would be perfect for this, sans iconic runway looks.

Really hope they don't shy away from the dark, uncomfortable, unflattering stuff. Some of those shows came from violent, messy, kinky places and should be acknowledged as such.

January 21, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterMark The First

Tilda Swinton or Kate Winslet as Isabella Blow

January 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterAdam

Stephen Wight is the actor who plays McQueen on stage, so he should be considered.

Russell Tovey definitely has the look - bonus points for getting a gay actor to play a gay man too. Maybe Dominic Cooper, Tom Cullen ... no Hardy please, just because he's hot right now doesn't mean he should be in everything.

January 22, 2016 | Unregistered Commentermsd

Tom Cullen is a great choice

January 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterPatryk

Nicholas Hoult as Alexander McQueen. Eva Amurri (Susan Sarandon's daughter) as Isabella Blow. Kate Moss as Kate Moss?

January 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterMareko

Oliva Colman of Fiona Shaw to play Isabella Blow.

January 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

Benedict Cumberbatch bears the closest resemblance from the A-list.

Kate swindler sounds fascinating as Isabella Blow; Olivia Colman spot on.

Frances McDormand for the working class mum, please.

January 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterSteve

@Sean Diego - I'm not saying he should be cast as McQueen, but did you see Tovey in Pride? He packed so much vulnerability, sadness and regret (and sexuality) into a small but important scene.

January 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterDJDeeJay

The idea of Tom Hardy and Olivia Colman in a film together, as McQueen and Isabella Blow makes me so happy. That said, it would also be interesting to see what Tilda Swinton would do with that part.

January 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterScottC

I'm for Tom Hardy.

@Paul Outlaw, no, Cara can't act.

January 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterLyndee

Graet news! Imelda Staunton as his mother, please! She doesn't look the part, but whatever.

January 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterJames T

Hmm. Just though of Jamie Bell.

January 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterPatryk

i would love for Tovey to get a big meaty part. I thought he was great in Pride & Looking. Tom Hardy can't get every role! so anxious for out gay actors to start getting great parts. it's time.

all of the suggestions for Isabella Blow are fascinating so far

January 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterNATHANIEL R

Thanks Lyndee.
Kate Moss is only 5' 7". So Emma Watson.

January 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterPaul Outlaw

Isabella Blow: Emma Thompson

Alexander McQueen: Joel Edgerton

Kate Moss: Saoirse Ronan

January 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterManuel

What about Jack O'Connell?

January 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterMirko

By all means do the film on McQueen, and Russell Tovey is good (catch him in "Banished").
Isabella Blow was a young Olivia Coleman. She'd be fabulous.
As for Kate Moss, they should cast an unknown. Emma Watson is way too upper class and doesn't look like her.
Vanity Fair did a good article on Isabella:

January 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterLadyEdith

Lots of great casting choices. Jose suggested Sally Hawkins as Blow and now I want to see that so bad.

January 22, 2016 | Unregistered Commentermurtada

LadyEdith, EW would be acting, so her class ain't an issue, and she's the only suggestion so far (except Delevingne, who I hear can't act) that looks even remotely like Kate (although that's not necessarily a requirement). I've been racking my brain for ideas. So yeah, maybe an unknown. But she'd need to have Angelina-as-Gia-sized talent.

January 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterPaul Outlaw

I clicked on the full post to suggest Russell Tovey and am so glad others beat me to it. He's talented, undersung, also gay, and looks the part. End of discussion if you ask me.

January 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterEvan

Paul Outlaw: Katie Jarvis? Don't know if she really looks like her, but she's talented and it'd be an interesting choice.

January 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

Boyd Holbrook!

January 23, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterIshmael

Garret Hedlund
Eileen Walsh
Elizabeth Olsen

January 23, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterG.ShaQ

Mirko - what foresight you have! O'Connell was cast today.

October 25, 2016 | Registered CommenterMurtada Elfadl

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