“What we always thought was special were the stories people didn’t know, but we knew them,” filmmaker Tim Bogart tells Deadline about bringing his father Neil Bogart’s story to the big screen with Spinning Gold, which is being sold in the Cannes market.
Neil Bogart saw the rise and fall of Casablanca Records, which in its heyday from the mid-to-late 1970s was a powerhouse in the disco sphere with artist such as Donna Summer, pop bands like The Village People and hard rock with KISS. The boom of the music scene and opulence of the drug era took its toll on Casablanca. The label was ultimately put into a strenuous financial position, and was in need of hit; their desperation relying on a 1974 two record set of audio highlights from TV’s The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, entitled Here’s Johnny: Magic Moments from the Tonight Show. Neil Bogart pushed the album as gold with 500K copies in an effort that it would turn platinum, but, alas that did not happen, with a flood of unsold records back to the label. Casablanca now resides under the Universal Music Group umbrella, specially as sub-label of Republic Records, focusing on dance and electronic music.
“As the family and the son who lived it, we grew up with these artists as family,” explains Tim Bogart, “Donna Summer was my aunt, Gene Simmons was my uncle.”
“I felt I had a unique insight into not just what happened, but what was special about what happened,” the director, writer and producer added.
While Tim Bogart was able to cast a majority of his film, i.e. Ledisi as Gladys Knight and Tayla Parx as Summer, he searched for quite sometime for the right actor to play his father. At one point, Justin Timberlake was attached to the project. The Greatest Showman producer Laurence Mark suggested Broadway stage star Jeremy Jordan as the right performer who could capture Bogart’s magnetism.
Check out the above interview with Tim Bogart, Jordan, Ledisi and Parx.
Capstone Global is selling Spinning Gold here at the market.
Aero is the official sponsor of the Deadline Studio at Cannes Film Festival. Sponsors are Soia & Kyo and Jamones Iberico from Spain: Ambassadors of Europe in the World
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