Everyone’s mum’s favourite nice guy is getting his just desserts from Tinsel Town, after conquering the world of inoffensive music.
You guessed it. Ed Sheeran is inexplicably in talks to take a leading role in a huge Hollywood hit written by Richard Curtis, the man who brought us Love Actually, Four Weddings and a Funeral and Notting Hill.
Just when you thought the proposition couldn’t get anymore quintessentially British, turns out the film is about The Beatles, pride of the United Kingdom’s musical history.
The new comedy – unimaginatively but tentatively titled All You Need Is Love – follows the story of a man who wakes up one day to find he is the only person who can remember the songs of The Beatles.
Plot hole number one: It’d take more than a strange case of worldwide musical amnesia to stop a group of drunks in a bar remembering and raucously chanting along to Hey Jude.
Yet, the law-defying film will go ahead and it is understood Sheeran will appear on screen and write new music for the film, which will also include Beatles hits.
Now, Ed would probably be the first to admit it’s a pretty big challenge. It’s enough to make his guitar and loop pedal gently weep.
To have your music stand side-by-side on a silver screen soundtrack with the most original and pristinely executed pop songs of all time (I.D.S.T.) is no easy stroll down Pennylane.
After all The Beatles had 17 number one hits, sparked the Beatlesmania phenomenon and composed some of the most sonically challenging and lyrically poetic music, which goes on to inspire countless artists to this day.
…And they did it all without looping one single bar.
But a source close to Working Title, the studio making the film, said:
Everything Ed touches turns to gold. He is the biggest hit-maker on the planet. If anyone can make a film about the Beatles songs even better musically, it’s him.
Disclaimer: This is not the opinion held by the writer, nor is it endorsed by UNILAD.
The source added:
Ed won’t be acting, so much as helping with the music and making a performance cameo.
No one is suggesting the Beatles music needs any help, but as Ed is a talented producer he will be of help to Richard and Danny behind the scenes.
Sheeran is known to be a massive fan of the so-called Fab Four. In 2014, he took part in a Grammys tribute to mark the 50th anniversary of The Beatles’ first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1964.
He performed an acoustic version of In My Life for a star-studded audience including Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr.
McCartney was so impressed with the performance, he later sent Sheeran a guitar signed: ‘For Ed, who is brilliant.’
Sheeran, 27, who is best known for hit songs The Shape Of You, Thinking Out Loud and Sing, has not yet signed on the dotted line for the Beatles film.
But insiders insist the undeniably talented riff-writer is keen. He’s probably just trying to dig out Good Chord Formations 101 from his attic.
It’s not the first time The Beatles have been immortalised in film format:
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Sadly for many, many Game of Thrones fans, it’s not the first time Ed’s given the screen acting thing a go either.
Sheeran’s last foray into film – a cameo appearance in the televised version of George R. R. Martin’s epic book series – was not well received.
Critics described his acting as ‘wooden’ and ‘dire’.
Meanwhile, new evidence has detailed how The Beatles – and their inimitable oeuvre – were influenced by drugs, put forward by the founder of The Beatles Bible, Joe Goodden, in his book Riding So High: The Beatles and Drugs.
Despite self-imposed restrictions on drug-taking in the studio and periods of sobriety, drugs were a part of everyday life for John Lennon, Ringo Starr, George Harrison and Paul McCartney.
Speaking to UNILAD, Goodden explained their ‘biggest artistic leaps coincided with new chapters in their drug-taking‘, from well-documented everyday encounters with cannabis and speed, to lesser known experiences on LSD, cocaine and heroin.
In the first extensive published research into the topic, he writes:
Cannabis in particular gave them an escape from the pressures of Beatlemania and allowed them to enjoy life in their own little bubble.
They used drugs throughout the 1960s much as they seized upon any new stimulus – music, sex, art, theatre, meditation and so on – taking what they could, then moving on when they ceased to deliver.
No one would contest The Beatles’ creativity and ambition – which Goodden credits largely with their success, adding ‘Lennon and McCartney – and later Harrison – were among the best songwriters of their generation, which had little if anything to do with drugs’.
Musing on what The Beatles’ discography would look like had the band never got their hands on illegal narcotics – which at times landed them in trouble with the police and divided public opinion – Goodden concluded it would ‘look partially different, but not entirely’.
A source from Sony ATV confirmed Sony and ATV Music Publishing had agreed to license Lennon and McCartney songs for the film which, according to a movie spokesperson, remains officially untitled.
Let’s hope Ed can find inspiration from sources which aren’t still socially taboo. Wouldn’t want to damage the family-friendly image, after all.
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A former emo kid who talks too much about 8Chan meme culture, the Kardashian Klan, and how her smartphone is probably killing her. Francesca is a Cardiff University Journalism Masters grad who has done words for BBC, ELLE, The Debrief, DAZED, an art magazine you’ve never heard of and a feminist zine which never went to print.