‘The Greatest Showman’ director’s upcoming biopic to replace its subject with a CGI monkey

The Greatest Showman

Michael Gracey may only have one feature film under his belt as a director, but that project happened to be The Greatest Showman, the instantly beloved musical that earned $435 million at the box office, landed an Academy Award nomination for Best Original Song, won a Grammy for its soundtrack and spurred Hugh Jackman on to mount a one-man stage show that toured the globe.

As far as calling cards go, it’s a damn impressive one, but the filmmaker’s upcoming effort is an altogether more interesting affair. As per Deadline, Gracey’s next project is a biopic of British singer Robbie Williams, with Better Man confirmed to be kicking off production in early 2022 in Australia.

robbie williams

However, the notable caveat in the report is that Williams is expected to voice himself in the dramatized and recontextualized adaptation of his own life story, with a CGI monkey set to fill in for him onscreen. It’s certainly an unusual and intriguing way to approach a biopic, especially one that’s being positioned as an event release.

Williams first shot to fame as a member of Take That, before launching a solo career that’s seen eleven of his twelve solo albums debut at number one on the U.K. charts. He’s also been open in dealing with mental health, depression, weight, self-esteem, alcohol and substance abuse issues throughout his life and career, so Better Man is evidently going to be a million miles away from formulaic.