The must-see biopics of 2019: From Elton John to Ted Bundy

Zac Efron as Ted Bundy

There are some pretty exciting biopics headed our way this year and here are some particularly promising additions.

Everyone loves a good biopic. There's something so thrilling about seeing an established performer channel the celebrity of another; to see them embody the role and to acknowledge their points of reference. Often, biopics rank highly amongst the most discussed films of the year, offering audiences insight into unsung heroes or contrarily the very opposite. 

It comes as no surprise that a string of biopics scheduled for 2019 have already drawn considerable attention. However, there are some that haven't. Here are the biopics which we expect to provide some of the year's cinematic highlights:

Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil, and Vile

This intriguing portrait of infamous serial killer Ted Bundy has already caused quite the controversy. It's directed by Joe Berlinger, best known for his extensive documentary work. Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil, and Vile stars Lily Collins in the role of Bundy's girlfriend Liz Kendall and is reported to be told largely from her perspective. However, it's the casting of Zac Efron as Bundy which has proved problematic.

Many are claiming that his casting sexualises the notorious murderer and that it will encourage many to romanticise his dreadful legacy. In defence, others have come forward to assert that his casting actually conforms to what many know about Bundy - his charisma was one of the main factors which facilitated his victims' vulnerability. It will be interesting to see how this one plays out; it's certainly one of the boldest casting decisions of the year. 


Hot off of the success of Bohemian Rhapsody, director Dexter Fletcher is set to bring the portrait of yet another beloved artist to the screen. His attention has shifted from Freddie Mercury to English musician Sir Elton John. His music has captivated us for decades and new film Rocketman will hopefully provide an intimate portal into the life of an icon. 

He will be played by Taron Egerton, perhaps most famous for the Kingsman franchise, of which Elton John himself has starred in. He looks fantastic in the role, which will inevitably be one of the most alluring performances of the year. Rocketman will release May 31, 2019. 


Everybody knows the name J.R.R. Tolkien. After all, most of us have ventured into Middle Earth more times than we can count. He wrote The Lords of the Rings trilogy and The Hobbit, which are generally considered among the best fantasy novels ever written and were successfully adapted by New Zealand filmmaker Peter Jackson. 

Although we know so much about his work, how much do we actually know about the man himself? Dome Karukoski's new biopic Tolkien hopes to prove informative and entertaining, introducing us to the world of a man who created one so unforgettable. The film is set to explore the author's formative years and pinpoint his inspirations, with Nicholas Hoult (Mad Max: Fury Road, The Favourite) in the titular role. Tolkien will be released May 10, 2019. 

Ford v. Ferrari

This isn't being discussed quite as much as the aforementioned projects but this might have something to do with the absence of a trailer. It's currently in post-production; despite this, we're already very excited for Ford v. Ferrari

As you may have guessed, this biopic focuses its attention on the rivalry between Ferrari and Ford to win Le Mans in 1966. Although it doesn't quite have the same mass appeal as the other films put forth, the names attached will ensure this one receives considerable attention. It's directed by James Mangold who recently helmed Logan, which was quickly considered the best effort of the popular X-Men franchise. With a cast featuring the likes of Christian Bale (Vice), Jon Bernthal (The Wolf of Wall Street) and Matt Damon (The Martian), Ford v. Ferrari is one to watch out for. 

A Beautiful Day in the Neighbourhood

Marielle Heller is certainly on a hot streak. She directed The Diary of a Teenage Girl in 2015 and has recently experienced great success with her latest film Can You Ever Forgive Me? starring Melissa McCarthy. Her latest, A Beautiful Day in the Neighbourhood, sounds just as promising. 

This biopic will tell the story of well-regarded TV personality Mister Rogers - Fred Rogers - the iconic host of preschool show Mister Rogers' Neighbourhood. Who's set to take the role you may ask? Oh, it's no one... Just Tom Hanks! That's right, the beloved American actor will be portraying Mister Rogers; certainly reason enough to be excited. It's estimated for a release date of October 18, 2019. 

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