Buddy Holly: A film about the Crickets music legend is being made

19 November 2020, 16:11 | Updated: 10 October 2023, 13:54

Buddy Holly
Buddy Holly. Picture: Getty

A new biopic about Buddy Holly is in the works, with the actor playing the late singer already decided.

Clear Lake is being directed by Bruce Beresford, with a screenplay written by Patrick Shanahan.

The film has been authorised by the Buddy Holly estate through record label BMG, which manages the Holly estate and controls the US publishing rights to his back catalogue.

As Variety reports, rapper Nelly will also play rock and roll icon Chuck Berry in the film.

Read more: The full story behind the Day the Music Died

Actor Ruairi O’Connor has already been cast as Buddy Holly, who tragically died in a plane crash aged just 22 in February 1959.

Tom Hanks' son Colin Hanks will play Holly’s manager and producer Norman Petty, while Diane Guerrero will play Holly’s wife, Maria Elena Holly, who will also be an associate producer on the movie.

Ruairi O’Connor will play Buddy Holly
Ruairi O’Connor will play Buddy Holly. Picture: Getty

The film will “tell the story of how Holly and other famous musicians of the late 1950s gave birth to rock‘n’roll while changing the trajectory of civil rights in America”.

Speaking about Clear Lake in May, Beresford said: “I found myself attracted to Clear Lake because the script tells the tragic story of Buddy Holly and his era in fascinating detail and with vivid characterisations.

“Needless to say, the added plus of all the wonderful music was also a major lure.”