Ron Howard will direct a biopic about Lang Lang, the acclaimed Chinese concert pianist. The movie will be based on Lang’s autobiography Journey of a Thousand Miles, with Michelle Mulroney and Kieran Mulroney handling the screenplay. Howard plans to start work on the film after he finishes the Thai Cave Rescue movie Thirteen Lives.
Variety says Ron Howard will direct a Lang Lang biopic for AGC Studio, with longtime Howard collaborator Brian Grazer, as well as Imagine Entertainment President of Features Karen Lunder and AGC Studios Stuart Ford also producing. The biopic will draw inspiration from Lang Lang’s autobiography Journey of a Thousand Miles, which features this synopsis:
Born in China to parents whose musical careers were interrupted by the Cultural Revolution, Lang Lang has emerged as one of the greatest pianists of our time. Yet despite his fame, few in the West know of the heart-wrenching journey from his early childhood as a prodigy in an industrial city in northern China to his difficult years in Beijing to his success today. Journey of a Thousand Miles documents the remarkable, dramatic story of a family who sacrificed almost everything—his parents’ marriage, financial security, Lang Lang’s childhood, and their reputation in China’s insular classical music world—for the belief in a young boy’s talent. And it reveals the devastating and intense relationship between a boy and his father, who was willing to go to any length to make his son a star.
“Lang Lang’s story is one of determination, passion, sacrifice, and finding the inner strength to beat the odds,” said Grazer and Howard. “This film is a bridge between two cultures that share universal truths about the gauntlets we face in the pursuit of greatness.”
Lang Lang added: “Dream big, work hard and always believe in yourself. This movie, thanks to Ron Howard’s vision, will inspire young people around the world to follow their dreams and never forget they are one in a million.”
Lang Lang was the first Chinese pianist to be engaged by the Berlin Philharmonic, the Vienna Philharmonic, and several American orchestras, and, as Variety adds, he’s performed at places such as “the Vatican, the Grammys, and the 2008 Beijing Olympics Opening Ceremony.” And, just in case you want to feel extra lazy and unsuccessful, let me just remind you that Lang Lang is only 38.
Howard is keeping busy as a filmmaker. He has the Netflix movie Hillbilly Elegy due out sometime this year, and he’s currently working on the Thai Cave Rescue movie Thirteen Lives. He’s also working on a documentary about chef Jose Andrés.
Let’s end this article with a tweet from The Farewell director Lulu Wang:
As a classically-trained pianist born in China, I believe it’s impossible to tell Lang Lang’s story without an intimate understanding of Chinese culture + the impact of the Cultural Revolution on artists & intellectuals + the effects of Western imperialism. Just saying.? https://t.co/63B14TCsRB
— Lulu Wang (@thumbelulu) September 22, 2020
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September 23, 2020