Patti Smith's 'Just Kids' is getting the mini-series treatment
Get ready to set your DVRs, Gigglers: There’s a mini-series version of Patti Smith’s memoir Just Kids on the way that’s poised to become our newest weekly addiction.
Patti Smith, if you’re not familiar, is a legendary singer-songwriter, artist, and general badass from the height of NYC’s punk rock movement. One of her most loved songs is “Because the Night,” which she co-wrote with Bruce Springsteen. Her life is an incredible story and is just right for television.
The mini-series, like her memoir, will focus on when she first rose to fame in the ’60s and ’70s in New York. From what we know so far, it has all the qualities of an amazing story, including encounters with the likes of Andy Warhol, Janis Joplin, and Jimi Hendrix. And, of course, there’s a love affair: Smith dated controversial photographer Robert Mapplethorpe, who shot the cover of her first album, Horses.
The mini-series is coming from a writing dream team. For the past four years, Smith has been working on the script with Oscar-nominated screenwriter John Logan, the mastermind behind Gladiator and Penny Dreadful. And Smith isn’t short on writing chops herself. She’s unofficially known as a “punk poet laureate” because of her fusion of poetry into her music, and in 2010 Just Kids won the National Book Award.
Smith said that she is particularly interested in a mini-series format for its, “narrative freedom and a chance to expand upon the themes of the book . . . to explore characters more deeply than a movie.” We’ll have to wait and see if part of this exploration includes the transition of Mapplethorpe and Smith’s relationship from lovers to friends. Smith was Mapplethorpe’s lifelong muse until he passed away from AIDS-related causes in 1989 — which Smith touches on briefly and painfully in her memoir.
No word on casting yet, but the Smith did once mention Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson in passing. More likely though is that they choose actors we’ve never heard of. “We were 20. We were unknowns, and I think it should be unknowns,” Smith said more recently.
Unfortunately, it will probably be a while until the story of this larger-than-life Rock and Roll Hall of Fame superstar reaches the small screen. On the bright side? That gives us all plenty of time to read her memoir first — and the upcoming sequel, out in October.
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