Published Jul 25, 2016The life and tragic death of enigmatic founding INXS frontman Michael Hutchence is set to be explored in a new documentary directed by friend and music video director Richard Lowenstein.
While currently without a title and ETA, the movie is a joint project from Universal Music Group and Passion Pictures (Searching for Sugarman).
Lowenstein's credits include Roland S. Howard documentary Autoluminescent, Strikebound and He Died with a Felafel in his Hand, as well as plenty of work with INXS. He directed several music videos for the band between 1984 and 1993, including four supporting singles from 1987's celebrated Kick, had sat behind the lens for the group's Australian Made: The Movie concert film, and directed Hutchence in 1986 drama Dogs in Space.
"I have been working on the definitive documentary film journey into the heart and soul of this complex, shy, poetic and exceptionally charismatic man for many years," Lowenstein said in a statement. "To be able to embark on this film now with such great partners as UMG, UK's Passion Pictures, Ghost Pictures, [longtime INXS manager] Chris [Murphy] and INXS is extremely exciting and I know that together we are going to tell this story like no one else can."
UMG film and television head David Blackman added: "Michael Hutchence was a musical genius who led one of the world's biggest bands to global stardom, only to succumb to a tragic end. We have assembled an incredible team that is committed to telling Michael's story and providing the world with a portrait of a man who left behind an enduring musical and cultural legacy."
Hutchence was found dead in a Sydney hotel room in 1997, with his death later being ruled a suicide. Partner Paula Yates died of an accidental overdose in 2000. Their now 20-year-old child, Heavenly Hiraani Tiger Lily, is to receive an undisclosed amount of the film's proceeds.
Hutchence sang for INXS from their inception in 1987 up until his death. He released 10 albums with the group, selling millions of albums worldwide and leaving the pop world with hits including "New Sensation," "Never Tear Us Apart," "Need You Tonight," "Suicide Blonde" and many more.
Plans for a biopic on the singer's life had been announced in 2012, with writer Bobby Galinsky having first been attached to write a screenplay based on Hutchence's posthumous biography, Just a Man — The Real Michael Hutchence. Lowenstein would later sign on to write the screenplay, but looks to have switched his switched his focus onto a documentary.