Helen Mirren To Replace Bette Midler In Phil Spector Bio-Pic

Helen Mirren To Replace Bette Midler In HBO Films’ Phil Spector Movie Starring Al Pacino
By NELLIE ANDREEVA Monday July 18, 2011

Less than a week after filming of the HBO Films movie Phil Spector was suspended after co-star Bette Midler had to pull out for medical reasons, the producers of the David Mamet-written and directed movie have found a replacement. And boy did they deliver. Oscar winner Helen Mirren has been tapped to star opposite Al Pacino in the film, which explores the client-attorney relationship between legendary music producer Phil Spector (Pacino) and defense attorney Linda Kenney Baden (Mirren), who represented Spector during his first trial for murder. Mamet, Barry Levinson and Pacino are executive producing Phil Spector, which had done 6 days of shooting when it suspended production last Tuesday after Midler suffered from a herniated disk. Filming is now expected to resume next week. In addition to her Academy Award for The Queen, Mirren has won 4 Emmy Awards, including one for the HBO miniseries Elizabeth I.

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13 thoughts on “Helen Mirren To Replace Bette Midler In Phil Spector Bio-Pic

  1. Oh, My! Helen Mirren!! This seems to be a juicy role. Too bad The Divine One is suffering from backaches and had to leave the project. I, for one, know how painful a spine disc can be.

  2. no offense but this is a freaken HBO movie. How r they getting big stars like pacino, bette, and mirren to do this film. well props to HBO i guess….

  3. Honestly, I was secretly hoping and praying that Mamet will suspend filming of the HBO movie until Bette is available to resume filming…but I was crushed upon reading this article 🙁 but in fairness to Helen Mirren, she’s a great actress and a worthy replacement for Bette. Bette set the bar high when she agreed to be part of this HBO film and certainy Mamet is aware of this. He knows that Bette’s replacement should be in the same caliber as her (Bette) in terms of acting greatness and star quality. I’m sad that I don’t have to look forward to in terms of seeing her acting again but hope springs eternal so…I’m hoping and praying again…:):):)

  4. Ooppss – what I meant was “I don’t have anything to look forward to now in terms of seeing her acting again…” I’m sorry, sadness really must have overtook me I couldn’t type straight 🙁

  5. Why Helen Mirren: Was Lady Gaga not available? No one copies the Divine One as well as her – and so readily…

  6. Ugh, Well this is somewhat bittersweet. I was so looking forward to seeing Bette act again, and doing something different than what she normally does. I’d love to see her be recognized as an amazing actor again by people who aren’t necessarily in her fanbase. So that’s a huge disappointment. However, I love, love, LOVE me some Helen Mirren! So hopefully something better will come along. She needs to take care of that back, so hopefully she can do another live tour!!!

  7. Mirren has a fine body for a lady her age. She’s as old as The Divine One, but Miss M has a younger face.

    On the Midler live performing front, I’d love a new Vegas residency. I swear I’d travel all the way from Brazil this time. That possibility at The Wynn Las Vegas seems so managable and nice…

    On the Midler video front, we still don’t have The Divine Miss Millennium and Kiss My Brass. But I have to thank Bette for The Showgirl Must Go On that will be in my hands in a few weeks, I trust.

  8. I’m looking forward to Helen Mirren’s Emmy acceptance speech for this part, thanking Bette for making it possible. If I’m not totally mistaken, neither Whoopi (for Bette’s passing on Sister Act) nor Kathy Bates (in her Oscar acceptance speech for Misery, which Bette had already started filming and then pulled out of “moral” reasons) gave her any credit for this “once in a lifetime chance”.
    I am very sorry not to be able to see Bette in a picture worthy of her talent (I’ve just watched “The Rose” again; one of the greatest performances ever!!!), but I’m glad to hear (or read, for that matter) that her back-pains don’t prevent her from excessive twittering (on things far below her status); as a matter of fact she seems quite upbeat, almost carefree: This might bode well for her to stick to a great project, even if it is controversial (as the nun in Sister Act was, or the “message” of Misery” – and even if she’s said to have had “three hard days” on the set with Mamet before letting her agent cancel her scheduled appearance); I would just love to see her acting skills again! I’d still pay any amount to see her live, but more in remembrance of all the great she did during all these years (her singing has peaked long ago; and understandably so; she’s no longer 40…) – and I believe the one thing left to do for her is portraying a great (serious) character in the big (or not so big) screen.

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