Kiss to Appear in Biopic About First Label Boss
Neil Bogart, the founder of Casablanca Records, will be the subject of a new biopic titled Spinning Gold, producers announced, with Kiss to be featured in the story.
Bogart gave the band its first record deal in 1973 and it remained with his label until 1982 – the year he died. In the movie, Gene Simmons will be played by Steven Strait (known for Magic City and The Expanse) and Paul Stanley by theater performer Sam Harris, while band manager Bill Aucoin will be played by Neil Patrick Harris (Doogie Howser, M.D., How I Met Your Mother.)
Deadline reported that, in order to assist Strait and Sam Harris with their roles, they’ll be invited to join Kiss’ End of the Road tour “to be their opening act during some upcoming tour stops, so that the scenes can be filmed with a packed house.”
Even though Casablanca enjoyed its greatest success in the disco era, Bogart also worked with T. Rex, Parliament, Dr. Hook and others; he also signed Peter Criss as a solo artist. Spinning Gold was written by and will be directed by the impresario’s son, Timothy Scott Bogart. It also stars Samuel L. Jackson as George Clinton, D.L. Hughley as Bootsy Collins, Jazmine Sullivan as Gladys Knight, Jeremy Jordan as Bogart and Caitlin Fitzgerald as Joyce Biawitz, his second wife and co-manager of Kiss.
Deadline noted that Timothy Scott Bogart had “resisted numerous overtures for the rights to frame a drama around the life of his father, including one where a producer sent two different scripts and a huge check. Bogart said he didn’t read the scripts or cash the check. While he and his brother rebuilt the Boardwalk brand his father started post-Casablanca into a successful business, and as he cut his teeth writing and producing TV and films, Bogart eventually came around to the feeling he was the one to tell his father’s story. His father had the reputation of a master promoter and showman who broke a swarm of acts that defined the ’70s disco era, but Bogart also was a man who would spend $4 to earn $3, and he didn’t leave much behind for his sons.”
“My father was making $100 million a year, at the height of Casablanca, but he quote-unquote ‘forgot’ to pay his taxes, and my inheritance amounted to three years at NYU, a Dodge Daytona and the rights to this story,” Bogart said. “I was going to protect this with all I had.”
Production of Spinning Gold commences on July 16 in Montreal. Kiss' End of the Road tour continues; you can find more ticket information here.