Patti Smith and the late Robert Mapplethorpe to feature in biopic
Patti Smith has started work on adapting her Award-winning bestseller Just Kids into a feature length film. This will finally bring to the big screen the story of downtown New York in the late 60’s and 70’s shedding some light on the the inception of punk rock. The National Book Award-winning autobiography is a compelling story which captures the dawn of the most influential musical,artistic and literary scene of the late 20th century. It is a personal memory of the time she shared with photographer Robert Mapplethorpe and includes her encounter with famous people including Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, and Andy Warhol. This prelude to fame recounts the friendship of two young artists–Patti Smith and Robert Mapplethorpe whose passion fueled their lifelong pursuit of art. In 1967, a chance meeting between two young people led to a romance and a lifelong friendship that would carry each to international success never dreamed of. The backdrop is Brooklyn, Chelsea Hotel, Max’s Kansas City, Scribner’s Bookstore, Coney Island, Warhol’s Factory and the whole city resplendent. Among their friends, literary lights, musicians and artists such as Harry Smith, Bobby Neuwirth, Allen Ginsberg, Sandy Daley, Sam Shepherd, William Burroughs, etc. It was a heightened time politically and culturally; the art and music worlds exploding and colliding. In the midst of all this two kids made a pact to always care for one another. Scrappy, romantic, committed to making art, they prodded and provided each other with faith and confidence during the hungry years–the days of cous-cous and lettuce soup. Just Kids begins as a love story and ends as an elegy. Beautifully written, this is a profound portrait of two young artists, often hungry, sated only by art and experience. And an unforgettable portrait of New York, her rich and poor, hustlers and hellions, those who made it and those whose memory lingers near. Smith is developing the screenplay with John Logan, the screenwriter who wrote the Oscar nominated “The Aviator” and “Gladiator”. He is a personal friend of Smiths and she admired his work, particularly his script for the upcoming Ralph Fiennes-directed film “Coriolanus.” and Logan’s Tony-winning play about artist Mark Rothko, “Red,” “He has a great knowledge of art”, she stated.
Patti Smith 2009 London Alison Jacques Gallery