Biopic has its US premiere at South By Southwest this week
Andre 3000 rehearsed for six hours a day in order to play guitar left handed for new Jimi Hendrix biopic Jimi: All Is By My Side.
Guitarist Waddy Wachtel took on the job of re-recording songs in the style of Hendrix for the film’s soundtrack, but the Outkast man, playing Hendrix, had to be convincing, producer Danny Bramson told told Billboard.
Bramson said: “The idea of anyone playing Hendrix, let alone a right-handed guitarist, was one of the greatest challenges of the project. I found a really patient teacher and put together a regimen for Andre when he came out to Los Angeles. He sat in a small studio, six hours a day, putting in dedication [to learn how to play left-handed]. His guitarmanship had to carry the idea of grace and fluidity. John and I declared that we didn’t want to have the camera cropped on his face and not the guitar. He kept working in a rehearsal room throughout the production.”
Scripted and directed by 12 Years A Slave screenwriter John Ridley, Jimi: All Is By My Side tells the story of Jimi Hendrix’s life throughout 1966 and 1967, a period in which he moved to London, formed the Experience and played a career-making set at California’s Monterey Pop Festival, which is where the film ends.
The film will not feature any songs recorded or composed by Hendrix himself, as the late guitarist’s estate declined permission. Instead, the film will see Andre 3000 perform songs by The Beatles and blues legend Muddy Waters that Hendrix himself covered in the ’60s.
The biopic was premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in September 2013, and is set to be screened On March 12 at South By Southwest in Austin, Texas. The supporting cast includes Hayley Atwell, Imogen Poots, Burn Gorman and The White Queen‘s Ashley Charles, who plays a young Keith Richards. A UK release date has yet to be announced.