Michael Flatley, the man who served as the face for Irish dance touring productions Riverdance and Lord of the Dance, is getting a biopic series based on his life. Titled Dancelord, the biography will be produced by StoryFirst Media, with Rod Gunner and Peter Gerwe acting as executive producers.
Variety‘s exclusive story feels like it came out of nowhere. In America, Lord of the Dance and Michael Flatley have not been at the forefront of pop culture for decades. In the mid-to-late-’90s, Riverdance made the rounds on PBS, and Irish dance was suddenly the new thing. It was overthrown by the swing-dancing fad, which also left the public’s favor just as quickly. However, overseas the Flately-led show remained popular even to this day.
Apparently, a lot went on behind the scenes, which could make for a fascinating watch. The synopsis for the show doesn’t paint a cheery picture of what Michael Flatley’s life has been like:
“For every transcendent moment onstage, Flatley endures grueling hours of pain and the loneliness of the road. Taunted by the media and, at times, doubted by everyone but his fans, Flatley bounces back time and again, dancing from his heart well into middle age and transforming Irish dance forever.”
The strangest news isn’t so much that Michael Flately is getting a biopic series, but who they chose to write it. Micho Rutare, whose credits include scripting Z Nation, Mega Shark vs. Crocosaurus, and the Sean Austin made-for-TV movie Adopting Terror, is penning the series. Casting is ongoing, with Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens’s casting director Jessica Sherman serving in that same role.
After being fired from the tour over creative differences, Michael Flatley created Lord of the Dance in 1996. The show shared many similarities with Bill Whelan’s Riverdance score, but LotD had an overarching narrative.
Both Riverdance and Lord of the Dance still tour to this day. As of now, Riverdance’s 2023 shows are taking place in Mexico, while Flately’s production is traveling through Ireland, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, Switzerland, the Czech Republic, Austria, and Slovakia.
Did you get caught up in the Irish dance craze of the mid-1990s? Let us know in the comments section below.[Source: Variety] [Source: Lord of the Dance official site] [Source: Riverdance official site]
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