Announcements are being made of a possible film biopic of Michael Hutchence, frontman of rock band INXS in the week of the anniversary of his death. Hutchence died in 1997 at the age of 37 from suffocation, which was caused by hanging. It was understood that at the time he was said to have been under the influence of drugs and alcohol.
Hutchence started his musical career in 1977 as the frontman for global success INXS. The band achieved most of their fame in the 1980’s and 1990’s and were known for hits songs such as Need You Tonight, Devil Inside and Never Tear Us Apart. He had several romances with high profile models, one of which included Helena Christensen and enjoyed a brief affair with Kylie Minogue. He was in a relationship with Christensen which he broke off when he started seeing the UK television presenter Paula Yates, who at that time was still married to Live Aid producer and Boomtown rats singer Bob Geldof. Hutchence had met Yates in 1985, during an interview for her program, The Tube, and when she re-interviewed him again in 1994 for her slot on the Big Breakfast show, the chemistry between them was clear for all to see.
Yates’ separated from Geldof in February 1995, was divorced from him in 1996 and so began a bitter legal custody battle over their daughters. On 22 July, Yates gave birth to Hutchence’s only child, their daughter Heavenly Hiraani Tiger Lily Hutchence, with Hutchence described her as “just what we ordered”.
It is thought that the film of his life will be based on a book written by Hutchences’ mother and sister. The rights to the book Just A Man – The Real Michael Hutchence, written by Tina Hutchence and Patricia Glassop, have been obtained by screenwriter Bobby Galinsky, who is best known for the hit 1990 film Flatliners, starring Julia Roberts and Kiefer Sutherland. Galinsky said: “I’ve been a writer for 35 years and this is something I’ve wanted to do for over a decade and everything has now come together,” he told ABC radio. “I want it to be what was behind the man, not just the guy you saw on stage, but who was Michael Hutchence?,” Galinsky told the Australian radio station. “What drove him, what were his demons, what were his loves – not the persona that people saw on stage for a couple of hours.”
The film is set to be titled Two Worlds Colliding, after lyrics from the INXS track Never Tear Us Apart. There has been no word as to who would play Hutchence in the movie but Galinsky said he had been “in conversation with couple of guys” which included “an English gentleman [and] several Australians”. He added, “But I would hate to pick someone out at the moment.” he added.
After the death of Hutchence, INXS continued to tour and eventually replaced the charismatic lead singer with a frontman who won a TV reality show, especially designed to find them a new lead singer. They announced their retirement after 35 years earlier this month.
Hutchence was found dead in a hotel room in Sydney on 22 November 1997 at the age of 37.