Josh Brolin to Star in George Jones Biopic
Josh Brolin has been cast to play George Jones in an upcoming movie based on the country singer's tempestuous life.
The Oscar-nominated actor revealed the news during an interview with Conan O'Brien. The Help and Zero Dark Thirty star Jessica Chastain will portray Tammy Wynette, Jones' ex-wife and frequent duet partner.
The film has a working title of No Show Jones, inspired by a nickname the Possum earned during the '70s and '80s during the height of his long battle with alcohol and cocaine abuse, when he was such an unreliable performer that promoters and fans couldn't guess when he would or would not turn up at his own concerts.
Brolin suggests his own past public struggles might have given him the inside track for the role. The actor was arrested on New Year's Day in 2013 and charged with public intoxication, and has since been to rehab. "I have a bit of a past," he notes dryly. "When they were trying to figure out who might be best able to best play George Jones, they thought, 'What about Brolin? Who's been to jail in the last 10 years? Let's pick Brolin!'"
The project has been in development for several years, and it had Jones' blessing before he passed away. His widow, Nancy Jones, is serving as an executive producer, and Alan Wenkus — who was recently nominated for an Oscar for his work on Straight Outta Compton — has signed on to write the film after reading an early draft.
“He loved it, and he loves George,” she tells Rolling Stone. “We brought him to town, absolutely loved him ... He understands what I’m wanting. I don’t want any lies — I want it exactly the way George started the [script] when he started it six years ago.”
Nancy Jones says she doesn't want to sugarcoat her late husband's addictions, which still consumed him daily when they met and married, and which she ultimately helped him to overcome. "It will be an honest, honest movie," she states.
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