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Creative England backs Finlay's new music documentary

Creative England is backing Jeanie Finlay’s next Orion: The Man Who Would Be King.

The feature documentary is about Jimmy Ellis, a singer who was plucked from obscurity in 1978, given a fictional identity, signed to Sun Records and thrust into the spotlight as part of a crazy scheme that had him masquerade as Elvis back from the grave.

Ellis had a voice that was described as “a dead-ringer for Presley’s” and wore a trademark mask when performing. After he had a meltdown and ripped off the mask live on-stage, he spent the rest of his career in obscurity before dying in a tragic killing.

Finlay has been working on the film since 2009 and with the backing she will be shooting more footage in Norway at the end of the month and will then be editing from February. During the past three years, Finlay has been doing archival research and interviewing key figures from Ellis’ life. The film will also include performances and interviews with Ellis from all stages of his career.

For full production details visit

Orion: The Man Who Would Be King

Orion will be the second co-production between Finlay’s indie Glimmer Films and Al Morrow at Met Film, with their third co-production Pantomime releasing Christmas 2013.

Finlay said: “I bought an Orion LP ten years ago at a car-boot sale. Enticed by the mysterious masked man on the cover I immediately wanted to peek underneath and discover more about the man behind the mask. When I heard his voice and uncovered his story I felt haunted and compelled to tell his Faustian quest for fame and his tragic demise.”

Anna Seifert Speck of Creative England added, “Orion is a compelling story with true cinematic potential. We are excited to be backing the project and excited to see how Jeanie will realise this unique story”

Al Morrow, producer, added “Met Film Production is thrilled to be working once again with director Jeanie Finlay and Glimmer Films on her new film Orion. An award winning director, Jeanie is a uniquely brilliant story-teller who puts her characters at the heart of all her films. As with The Great Hip Hop Hoax, she has found another extraordinary protagonist in Jimmy Ellis aka Orion – the man who would be king.”

Finlay, a former Screen International Star of Tomorrow who has credits including Sound It Out and Goth Cruise, is now finishing The Great Hip Hop Hoax, which will launch this year both theatrically and on the BBC’s Storyville strand. That project is about Silibil n’ Brains, Scottish students who masqueraded as an American hip-hop duo.  

 



Readers' comments (10)

  • Jimmy Orion Ellis is a complete joke and an embarrassment to all Elvis fans worldwide. The demographic of all Orion fans are semi-retarded and live in trailer parks..and not to mention their IQ's are less than 3.

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  • I think you have to wait to see Finlay's movie. She did great work with Sound It Out. She's also figured out innovative ways for financing as can be read here... http://www.musicfilmweb.com/2013/01/orion-elvis-jeanie-finlay-music-documentary/

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  • It sounds a fascinating story - I'd definitely go to see that. And I don't live in a trailer park.

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  • The Masked Onion is nothing more than a no-talent masked clown. The only ones that fall for this so called Elvis wannabe are uneducated fools that live off of government assistance...and dance around in big bird outfits claiming to be the Onion King !

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  • I agree. Mr. Onions is just another Elvis Tribute Artist that I really don't care for. He sounds like crap.

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  • Does Anonymous really think that we should only make films about music he or she likes? Sounds like a pretty limiting model. Orion is a story of fandom and of musicians and how far they will go to claim fame, even if they have to do it in the guise of another. It is the American dream Baby!

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  • he definetly deserves a film.....and anonymous doesn't have a clue as to what they r talking about.....Jimmy deserved so much more than what he got

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  • Jimmy Elis we love you, well better the elvis when is the film coming out? all you haters can bow down and kiss the jimmy ellis ring ha

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  • Anonymous, then don't visit @ElvisAndOrion as it might tip you over the edge.

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  • Anonymous, then don't visit @ElvisAndOrion as it might tip you over the edge.

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