Jay Leno is stepping into the silver screen for a role that will see him perform as another much-celebrated TV personality, Ed Sullivan. Leno has been cast in the role for the upcoming biopic, Midas Man, about Beatles manager Brian Epstein.
The film chronicles Epstein’s critical role in The Beatles’ illustrious career as well as his impact on the world of pop music in general. Midas Man, which is currently still in production, also stars Jacob Fortune-Lloyd, known for his recent role in The Queen’s Gambit, who will take on the role of Epstein.
Leno’s secured one hell of a meaty part. The Beatles’ 1964 appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show is regarded as one of the most important moments in the history of pop music and was instrumental in bringing The Beatles’ music to the US – not to mention the wave of British bands, such as The Who and The Kinks, that followed.
The Ed Sullivan Show is, to this day, still the longest-running variety show in US broadcast history, airing from 1948 to 1971. Sara Sugarman will direct the upcoming cinematic tribute, which will feature a cast comprised of Emily Watson, Eddie Marsan, Lukas Gage, Rosie Day, and Bill Milner.
As well as hosting The Tonight Show from 1992 to 2009, Jay Leno has also made a number of one-off cameos in television shows such as The West Wing, Friends, Hannah Montana, Entourage, and The Simpsons. He’s also offered up his voice for roles in the likes of The Fairly OddParents and Jacob Two-Two. His role in Midas Man, however, marks the first time he has performed as someone other than himself since the ’90s.
Production for Midas Man shut down for a while following the departure of director, Jonas Akerlund. However, it has since resumed. A statement released at the time of the announcement read: “Until some matters become clearer, we are not able to add any further comment to this statement. In the meantime, we can confirm that filming of Midas Man will continue in London in November before breaking for Christmas. Filming will restart in early January in Los Angeles.”