Virginie Ledoyen to Star in THE LAST BEAT; Plot Loosely Based on Last Days of Jim Morrison

     December 13, 2010

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French actress Virginie Ledoyen, whose claim to international fame was a starring role in The Beach alongside Leonardo DiCaprio, will appear in a movie inspired by Doors singer Jim Morrison.

The Last Beat is loosely based on his last days in Paris, where he died in 1971. Ledoyen will play Clémence, a countess and one of the two love interests of Jay Douglas, the Morrison-inspired character played by Shawn Andrews. Hit the jump for the synopsis and more.

virginie_ledoyen_01Its timing will somewhat coincide with the 40th anniversary of Morrison’s death 2011, although the release date has been announced for 2012. Oliver Stone’s 1991 biopic The Doors was released in time for the 30th anniversary, but that’s where the comparison between the two films ends.

Stone based his movie on Danny Sugerman and Jerry Hopkins’s biography of The Doors No One Here Gets Out Alive, and what bothers me is that he chose to portray mostly the negative aspects of Morrison’s life. Granted, there were many and it makes for good entertainment but the book depicted him as more than just a spoiled rock star and tortured soul.

While I have some reservations about The Last Beat — I’m not sure about the cliché love triangle — I am relieved that it will feature an original soundtrack and not a massacre of Doors songs.

The production company Bohemia Group revealed more details in a press release:

Writer and Director Robert Saitzyk (Godspeed) dives deeply into the torrid world of rock and roll to craft the realm that is the last days of rock star Jay Douglas in the film The Last Beat. Leading the cast in this powerful drama as the famous and tortured Douglas is Shawn Andrews, whose screen credits include the award winning Fix opposite Olivia Wilde, Dazed and Confused and City of Ghosts, and now attached is the César-nominated French actress Virginie Ledoyen, who has been seen in films such as Tout ce qui brille, The Army of Crime and of course Danny Boyle’s The Beach. Ledoyen will play Clémence, a French Countess involved in a turbulent love triangle between Jay Douglas and his self-professed “soul mate” — the earthy, but fiery Valerie Eason.

The Last Beat explores the life of a world weary self exiled rock star searching for a more artistic existence as a poet and writer in Paris, with the hope of erasing his tarnished former stardom. The film’s rich storyline will be accompanied by a completely original soundtrack redolent with the influences of the early 70’s ranging from Rock n Roll to French Pop. The Last Beat will offer audiences a refreshing view of the turbulent end of the 60’s and early 70’s along with an insightful perspective into the melancholy lifestyle and unerring clarity of a rock star and poet coming to terms with his own end.

Production is set to commence in late spring 2011 and will be shot primarily on location in Paris, France.

I’m assuming Valerie Eason is based on Jim Morrison’s girlfriend Pamela Courson, who died in 1974. The actress for the role hasn’t been announced yet.

Ledoyen’s international career never really took off after 2000’s The Beach, not Marion Cotillard style anyway, although she has worked consistently ever since. She has made a slew of (often average) French films and starred this year in Géraldine Nakach’s Tout ce qui brille. But Ledoyen seems intent on making an international “comeback” and is set to appear on TV in XIII: The Series, based on the popular comic by Jean Van Hamme and William Vanc, and, as we previously reported, has been cast in L.D. Napier’s directorial debut, Mis-Fits.

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