Grime artist Wiley is to be the subject of an upcoming biopic movie.
The 39-year-old, real name Richard Kylea Cowie, is considered a pioneer in the British underground music scene and is also known as the Godfather of Grime thanks to his pivotal role in the creation of the genre. Now Pulse Films and BGM have teamed up to reflect his turbulent life story on the big screen, and will trace his early days as a struggling producer and performer on pirate radio in London right up to the musician's global success.
“This is my life, my highs and lows, but it’s not really all about me,” Wiley said in an interview with Variety. “When I make music, help the scene or even do something like this, it’s like I’m not alone anymore. It’s for people who grew up like me. I’m doing it to help people who are lost like me.”
The movie will also depict the growth of grime from its underground U.K. roots to its worldwide popularity.
Wiley has continued to make grime music alongside crossover hits including Wearing My Rolex and Heatwave. The movie of his life will be helmed by British director Adam Smith, who previously worked on documentary The Chemical Brothers: Don't Think, about the electronic duo. He also directed the music video for Wiley's first single as a lead artist Wot Do U Call It? in 2004.
“Meeting Wiley and seeing what he and his friends were creating was a huge inspiration to me,” Smith smiled. “Making a film about this incredible talent and his story 15 years later is very exciting.”
The film will be written by British Egyptian poet and playwright Sabrina Mahfouz, who tweeted her excitement about the project on Monday (14May18).
"There’s gonna be a film about @WileyUpdates & I’m writing it & the sun is shining & I’m sorry for anyone having a bad day but this is DREAMS on multiple levels so if u go to east London today u will see my smile stretch central line lengths & oh - we gonna make a Wiley film!!"
Wiley's sister Janaya Cowie and founder of urban music channel SBTV, Jamal Edwards, are on board as executive producers.