Key European territories among those to pick up rights to the documentary about the late actor’s struggle to make a film about Le Mans.
Content Film has secured a raft of pre-sales for McQueen: The Man & Le Mans, a film about the struggle that late Hollywood actor Steve McQueen endured while making a feature about the famous 24-hour race.
Content has sold the film to the UK (The Works), France (Marco Polo), Italy (Iwonder), Germany, Scandinavia & Australia/NZ (Entertainment One (eOne)), Portugal (Lusomundo), Middle East (Salim Ramea Co.) and Yugoslavia (VIP).
Filming began on the documentary this spring, continues in France and will conclude in the US at the end of the summer. The screen icon’s son, Chad McQueen, will attend Le Mans Classic – returning to the circuit for the first time since he was on the original movie set as a boy. He will retrace his father’s footsteps at the track - integral to McQueen’s cinematic vision - as part of the filming for the documentary.
Co-directed by Gabriel Clarke and John McKenna, Clarke is writing the project and McKenna is producing. Motor sport reporter and commentator Andrew Marriott, who devised the original concept, also serves as executive producer alongside Barry Smith and Bonamy Grimes with Richard Wiseman on board as archive producer. Chad McQueen, Dave Green and David Reeder also serve as executive producers.
The star of The Great Escape and Bullitt tackled a passion project in 1970, titled Le Mans, which reflected his passion for motor racing.
The documentary tells the story of a life-changing six months for McQueen, during which time director John Sturges quit the project, McQueen’s marriage fell apart and his company was on the brink of bankruptcy. He also learned he was on the top of Charles Manson’s ‘death list’.
The documentary - set to the soundtrack of McQueen’s voice - will feature never-before-seen footage that was recently unearthed in a Parisian basement.
Interviewees to date include five-time winner of Le Mans and former McQueen housemate, Derek Bell; David Piper, who lost a leg during filming; McQueen’s co-star in the film Sigi Rauch; and Jonathan Williams who drove the camera car at the Le Mans race in 1970.
Chad McQueen said: “I remember my time as a boy on the set in Le Mans as though it were yesterday so it is exciting to return.
“My dad set out to make the most realistic racing film ever, and it was one of the most personally important films in his career, which is why now, more than 40 years later, I believe he would have been proud that it has become one of the greatest stories about racing ever told.
“The real story of how LE MANS got made is the stuff of legend so I have chosen to partner with filmmakers John McKenna and Gabriel Clarke to create the definitive film on the making of that iconic movie.”