Johnny Marr working on new ‘theatrical project’ with Maxine Peake

Mystery project will launch next year, says former Smiths guitarist

Johnny Marr has revealed that he has been working on a new project with actor Maxine Peake.

Marr is set to release autobiography Set The Boy Free tomorrow (November 3). He’ll be talking about his book at Manchester’s Royal Northern College of Music on 7 November and at Milton Court at London’s Barbican on 10 November.

Speaking to Edith Bowman for Virgin Radio, the former Smiths guitarist detailed his other upcoming plans, saying: “At the moment I’m writing with Maxine Peake, the actor – we’re going to do a thing next year. Everybody says [she’s incredible].”

“I had this idea for a different kind of show… that was theatrical but not a play, and musical but not a gig,” he went on to explain. “The only person I wanted to do it with was Maxine, so we’ve started working on it.” Peake is best known for her roles in Dinnerladies and Shameless, as well as numerous stage roles.

“I got to do all of these things [during my career] and then I ended up getting my own band and thought, you can’t really diversify from there.”

NME has contacted Marr’s press representative for further details. The full interview will air on Virgin Radio on Thursday morning at 8am.

Maxine PeakeGetty Images

This comes after Marr revealed that he and Morrissey met in 2008 and discussed the possibility of reforming The Smiths, but that talks later came to nothing.

Marr has also responded to Morrissey’s recent remarks about being pro-Brexit and being in favour of UKIP leader Nigel Farage – adding that his political beliefs are yet another reason why a reunion of The Smiths is unlikely.