Los Angeles—In what will be the closest he ever comes to attaining an EGOT, producers confirmed yesterday that Justin Bieber has been tapped to play mega-talented composer Marvin Hamlisch in a new bio pic scheduled to begin production next month in Bieber’s native Canada.
The film, titled, “The Way He Was,” will co-star Bieber’s on-again-off-again gal pal Selena Gomez as Barbara Streisand, for whom Hamlisch got his first gig on Broadway as a rehearsal pianist. Denzel Washington has signed on to play Quincy Jones, who first got Hamlisch into films in the late 1960s.
Chris Pine has been confirmed to be in talks to make a cameo appearance as Robert Redford. Simon Helberg has been cast as Woody Allen, and Maia Mitchell will play Carole Bayer Sager, Hamlisch’s prolific writing partner during much of his success. Their collaboration was the basis for Neil Simon’s successful stage musical, “They’re Playing Our Song” in 1978.
The film will mark the first time a Hollywood studio has taken the huge, monumental, foolish risk of putting Bieber in a starring role. But his reps said he’s “more than ready for the task.”
“As soon as we sat Justin down and explained to him exactly who Mr. Hamlisch was and what all he accomplished during his too short life, he was stoked, like crazy stoked,” said Bieber’s manager. “And, really, who hasn’t heard Selena on the radio and instantly thought, ‘Babs,’ am I right? Am I right?”
Bieber’s manager went on to make some ridiculous comparison between the late, great Hamlisch and Bieber, mentioning how “both were child prodigies who possessed an immense wealth of natural musical talent.”
Hamlisch, who also won a Pulitzer Prize in 1975 for his work on “A Chorus Line,” died in August, 2012, and likely is spinning in his grave over this news.