Seeing as Sam Kinison was one of the most influential and legendary standup comedians of all time, and also a man who engaged in a crazy, tumultuous lifestyle outside of his professional accomplishments, it seems like he would make a great subject for one of those melodramatic Hollywood biopics where some hopeful actor sports a ridiculous hairdo and apes said subject’s iconic affectations in order to make a play at golden statues and the accolades of their peers.
At least that seems to be the hopes of director Larry Charles (Borat) and actor Josh Gad (1600 Penn), as Deadline is reporting they’re about to team up to bring a Kinison biopic to the big screen.
The film, called simply Kinison, is based on the book “Brother Sam,” which was written by Bill Kinison and has been adapted for the screen by Airheads (most famously xXx, but let’s give the guy some credit) writer Rich Wilkes. From Deadline’s report, it seems like Kinison will be a fairly extensive look at the comic’s adult life, beginning when he was dipping his toes into the family business by doing some Pentecostal preaching, continuing on through his wildly successful standup career, covering his eventual morphing into an out of control drug monster, and then ending with his tragic demise in a car accident involving a drunk driver.
Charles started his career in show business by being a touring comedian, right around the same time Kinison was establishing a mini-kingdom as the self-appointed ruler of The Comedy Store. He’s since gone on to be a writer on Seinfeld, as well as a director on Curb Your Enthusiasm and all of Sacha Baron Coen’s various half hidden camera, half narrative adventures.
Gad first gained notoriety by starring as Elder Cunningham in the Broadway run of South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone’s wildly successful “The Book of Mormon.” He then left that production to co-create and star in White House comedy 1600 Penn for NBC. He’ll also soon be seen playing Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak alongside Ashton Kutcher in the upcoming Steve Jobs biopic, Jobs. As you can see in the picture above, playing Wozniak is a role that more than proves Gad has what it takes to rock the stringy, long, early 80s hair necessary to pull off a believable Sam Kinison. So fans should have no reason to be nervous.