Back in May of this year we reported on the fact that Martin Scorsese was going to be taking on the legendary figure of Frank Sinatra in a biopic about the singer, simply titled Sinatra. Along with that news came word that a couple of actors were lined up to play the titular man, in the form of Johnny Depp and Leonardo DiCaprio.
Depp was reportedly the studio’s first choice for the role, while DiCaprio’s name was being thrown around as a possibility more than anything, particularly because he’s lead many of Scorsese’s movies over the past few years (The Aviator, The Departed, Gangs of New York).
However, we get news today – thanks to The Guardian (via Cinemablend) that DiCaprio may be more in the running to play Sinatra than we first thought, along with the already-mentioned Depp (who I guess is seriously being looked at since his name is still attached, as opposed to the studio just throwing his name in there to attract attention to the project) and we now learn that George Clooney is being looked at as well. Hmmm – three of Hollywood’s biggest names battling it out to play one of the entertainment industry’s biggest names. If any upcoming role is is going to attract this much interest, it’s playing Sinatra…
As far as who’s most likely to GET the role, it’s still up in the air since each actor has strong backers in their corner: Universal, as previously reported, is pushing for Depp to play the role, after being impressed by his portrayal of John Dillinger in Public Enemies; Sinatra’s daughter, Tina (who will serve as exec producer on the biopic), has her eye on Clooney to portray her late father; and, inevitably, Scorsese wants DiCaprio, who he recently worked with on Shutter Island after a string of many other collaborations.
Tina Sinatra being involved in the film – after giving permission for Universal to use her father’s actual singing voice, amongst other things – led to speculation that the biopic wouldn’t shed any sort of negative light on her late father. But a quote sourced by The New York Post says that she’s worried Scorsese will give her father the same unflinching treatment he gave boxer Jake La Motta in Raging Bull. Scorsese apparently wants it to be, “hard-hitting and [to] showcase the violent, sexually charged, hard-drinking Frank,” while Tina wants, “to show the softer side of her dad and let the focus be on the music.”
Personally, I’d like to see an equal combination of both. If this is to be a truthful biopic about one of music’s all-time greats, then doesn’t it have to include the bad as well as the good? If you just include the good then you’re masking the fact that the man’s life wasn’t all roses. I’m not saying Scorsese should dwell on the negative, losing sight of the music, (which was and still is loved by millions). But at the same time the bad stuff shouldn’t be omitted, IMO.
As far as who should play Sinatra… of the three names being thrown around… as cliched as it may sound, I’d choose DiCaprio. I know from the comments here at Screen Rant that some people just don’t like him, but personally I can’t see why. Save for a couple of instances, he always delivers the goods, often giving downright excellent performances (Catch Me If You Can springs to mind). Depp (who has proven he can play just about anything) and Clooney (who has the charisma and charm necessary) are fine choices too, but of the three DiCaprio sticks out to me as a much better fit.
As far as doing Sinatra’s voice justice, whoever plays him need not worry about that – any music/singing will come from Sinatra’s own recordings. A load off the three named actors’ minds, I’ll bet…
What do you think of the three actors being looked at to play Sinatra? Which of the three would you choose to play him? And do you think the biopic should show the good as well as the bad from Frank’s life?
There’s no release date been set for Sinatra as of yet, but Scorsese is said to be moving onto it next year after he finishes with Shutter Island.