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Tom Hiddleston Starring In Paul Raymond Biopic; Will Compete With Michael Winterbottom Film

Written by on June 18, 2012 

Dueling biopics are, almost without exception, the kind of battle where nobody walks away a true winner. It’s a tiring, unnecessary meshing of similar topics that, again, comes out with the same insights on the same person with little satisfying difference to spare. The next person to get not one, but two films about their life is Paul Raymond, an English strip club owner, porn distributor, and one-time owner of London’s entire West End; Michael Winterbottom and Steve Coogan have already shot their own account, King of Soho. Wouldn’t you be thrilled if those two made a movie about your father? It’s not enough for Howard Raymond.

An interview with The Daily Mail (via BleedingCool) revealed that he’s working on his own film — based on Paul Raymond’s book, one that’s (oddly) also named The King of Soho — and that Tom Hiddleston is already in line to take the role, which will require him to be “in every scene in the film.” Raymond is “delighted” and “chuffed to bits” by the development, a feeling that’s particularly tied to his own contempt for Winterbottom‘s film. When comparing the two projects, he (rather smugly) said the difference would “be like chalk and cheese”; they’re all holding King of Soho as “something akin to a carry-on spoof.” (There might even be a lawsuit on the way, but let’s not worry about it right now.)

Though I enjoy (and would like to see) more of Hiddleston‘s work, it’s hard to generate much enthusiasm over another film about someone who, all due respect, doesn’t necessarily interest me in the first place. I’m sure he’d do terrific work with the role — and I’ll probably see it when the chance comes, honestly — but can’t we focus on one good film about somebody and then just move on? Even a pissy son can’t justify his own reasons.

Is it necessary that a second Raymond biopic gets made? Does Hiddleston sweeten the deal?

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