Unknown British Actor Cast as Keith Richards in Jimi Hendrix Biopic

Matt Dolloff, CBS Radio Boston

Jimi Hendrix biopic All Is By My Side has found its Keith Richards. The film’s producers have cast unknown British actor Ashley Charles in the role of the legendary Rolling Stones guitarist, according to The Hollywood Reporter, who provide a photo of the actor.

Charles, whose IMDb page lists a 2010 short film called White Buffalo as his only film credit and includes a single headshot, was likely cast as much for his  strong resemblance to a young Richards as his acting ability. It surely wasn’t because of a deep resume.

Charles joins a cast including rapper Andre 3000 as Hendrix and experienced British actress Hayley Atwell (Captain America) as Richards’ girlfriend Linda Keith, who claimed to have discovered Hendrix performing in a nightclub and giving him one of Richards’ earliest-used Fender Stratocasters.

Whether or not that actually happened, it’s likely to take place in the movie since, well, it’s a movie.

Charles certainly looks the part of Keith Richards, but can he act? Perhaps he should take some cues from Johnny Depp’s Captain Jack Sparrow in Pirate of the Caribbean, who he says is partially based on Richards’ mannerisms.

Richards wrote in his memoir Life: “She went to New York and took up further with Jimi Hendrix, who may have broken her heart, as she broke mine.” So clearly Richards and Hendrix shared something of a strong relationship with each other, so it remains to be seen just how much of it is dramatized in the movie.

What do you think of casting an unknown Keith Richards look-alike in the role? Do you think it’s the right approach? Share your thoughts in the comments.

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