Deadline brings word that Emmy nominee Elizabeth Banks (Modern Family, Pitch Perfect 3, The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part) will star in and produce Queen for a Day for Paramount Players, based on the Daily Beast story “When Prince Made a Chambermaid His Queen for a Day” by Chris Lee. Flora Greeson will be rewriting the first draft by Josh Stolberg.
The movie is based on the true 1986 story of when Warner Bros. created a contest to promote Under the Cherry Moon, the follow-up to Prince’ Purple Rain. Through MTV, Warner Bros. staged a Win A Date With Prince contest in which the 10,000th caller won a date with the rock star. More than just a date, the studio would stage a premiere of Prince’s film in the winner’s hometown, followed by a concert toplined by Prince and The Revolution.
The winner was Lisa Barber, a young lady in Sheridan, Wyoming who cleaned hotels and was a big Motley Crue fan. The movie may be inspired by the article about the Cinderella story date, but the film will actually be about how the event changed the lives of two very different women — the Manhattan PR exec responsible for the event’s success and the shy, awkward contest winner from Wyoming, whose town becomes the unexpected nexus of all things Prince for one unforgettable night.
The outlet confirmed that no one will be playing Prince in the project, but that “his presence will hover through the film.” Queen for a Day will focus on the herculean effort that went into organizing an event that brought the rock icon to a small cowboy town and established his date as a reluctant media sensation in what was “coke-fueled chaos” behind-the-scenes as the original Daily Beast article described it.
Banks is producing the film alongside Max Handelman via their Brownstone banner. Josh Stolberg and David Klawans will also produce along with executive producers Scott Neustadter, Michael Weber, and Brownstone’s Alison Small.
Banks can next be seen on the big screen in the action comedy The Happytime Murders alongside Melissa McCarthy, Maya Rudolph, and Joel McHale. The movie will hit theaters on August 24, 2018.
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