Daniel Radcliffe, the Tony-nominated actor most famous for his portrayal of the child wizard Harry Potter, is set to star as Grammy-winning musician ‘Weird Al’ Yankovic in the first original biopic produced for Roku, entitled “Weird: The Al Yankovic Story.” Appropriately, one of the producers is the internet comedy sensation Funny Or Die; the other production company involved is Tango. Yankovic co-wrote the film’s script with Eric Appel, who is also set to direct the project.
“Weird Al” Yankovic is the biggest-selling comedy recording artist of all time and a five-time Grammy winner, having gotten his start by sending cassette tapes to the Doctor Demento show when it was still in syndication on terrestrial radio. The musician’s 2014 release Mandatory Fun was the first comedy album in history to debut at number one on Billboard’s Top 200 chart.
The official “Weird: The Al Yankovic Story” synopsis from Roku reads: “The biopic holds nothing back, exploring every facet of Yankovic’s life, from his meteoric rise to fame with early hits like ‘Eat It’ and ‘Like a Surgeon’ to his torrid celebrity love affairs and famously depraved lifestyle. ‘Weird: The Al Yankovic Story’ takes audiences on a truly unbelievable journey through Yankovic’s life and career, from gifted child prodigy to the greatest musical legend of all time.”
“When my last movie UHF came out in 1989, I made a solemn vow to my fans that I would release a major motion picture every 33 years, like clockwork. I’m very happy to say we’re on schedule,” said Yankovic in a statement. “And I am absolutely thrilled that Daniel Radcliffe will be portraying me in the film. I have no doubt whatsoever that this is the role future generations will remember him for.”
Funny or Die Had This Idea Years Ago
Funny or Die made this trailer for a fictitious Weird Al biopic in 2013, and it’s pretty slapstick, following every dramatic overused trope in modern biographical films. All the grit and drama is there, the taudry affairs, the alcoholism, all of it. And of course, all entirely made up.
Production on the real biopic, apparently originally conceived eight years ago, is set to begin in Los Angeles in early February.
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