Following the success of Crazy Rich Asians, the groundbreaking film's director Jon M. Chu will be telling the story of Journey frontman Arnel Pineda in a biopic. The Arnel Pineda movie is being produced by Warner Bros.
Chu told Deadline that the success of Crazy Rich Asians has inspired him to tell more inspirational stories from all around the world.
"[Arnel's story] in particular has been on my mind since I first read about it years ago," Chu said. "A true fairy tale and triumph of the human spirit. An unlikely hero, an undeniable talent, the power of music and a worldwide stage (literally) has all the ingredients I love about movies.
"Plus I have been a fan of Journey’s music since I can remember. I am excited to be bringing the audience along on this incredible story with my partners at Warner Bros. who have been a leading champion of diverse voices in front and behind the camera.”
Chu and Warner Bros. have also acquired the rights to the 2012 documentary Don't Stop Believin': Everyman's Journey, which was also about Pineda's life.
Funnily enough, Pineda doesn't seem to know much about the project. In fact, it looks like he found out about the film via the Deadline article. On Instagram, he wrote: "I'm quite honoured and should be an exciting movie to do but you need to reach out to me, Mr. Jon M. Chu and Warner Bros., cause I'm right here waiting." Oh, snap.
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Arnel Pineda movie: From obscurity to worldwide stardom
The Arnel Pineda movie will likely chronicle the singer's rise from obscurity and poverty to becoming the lead singer of one of biggest rock bands in the world.
Pineda was born in Tondo, Manila in 1967. After his mother died when he was 13 years old, he ended up spending years on the streets, earning money by collecting and selling recyclable trash.
He entered the music scene in the 80s, forming several bands throughout the 90s that gained him some local attention. In 2007, Journey guitarist Neal Schon found Pineda's videos covering their songs on YouTube, and sent him an email inviting him to audition for the band.
At first, Pineda thought that the email was a hoax, but a friend convinced him to reply. 10 minutes after sending his reply, Pineda got a phone call from Schon, and he was flown to San Francisco for his audition in August 2007. In December of that year, the band announced him as Journey's new lead singer.
To give you a feel of what's to come from the Arnel Pineda movie, watch the trailer for the 2012 documentary here:
Are you looking forward to the Arnel Pineda movie?