Despite having gone down in legend as the birthplace of American punk, the New York club CBGB shut its door in 2006. However its memory lives on and now director Randall Miller is busy putting together a biopic of the club’s founder, Hilly Kristal, with THR reporting that Alan Rickman is now set for the main role.
Miller had been busy putting together a movie about the Beach Boys’ Dennis Wilson, called The Drummer, with Aaron Eckhart set to star. However production on that has had to move to the autumn, so Miller is trying to slot in CBGB first.
Rickman will play Hilly Kristal, who in the late 1970s sought to create a venue for county, bluegrass and blues music (the CBGB of the name) in New York. However, after acts playing that music were tough to find, Kristal allowed local performers to play. That decision was precipitous, as the club soon became ground zero for rock & roll as well as punk, launching the careers of performers such as The Ramones, Blondie and Patti Smith.
it’s not the first time Rickman has worked with Miller, as they teamed up for Bottle Shock in 2008.