According to The Hollywood Reporter, lip-synch legends Milli Vanilli are slated to get their own biopic soon. Several attempts have been made to bring the duo's story to the big screen, and it seems like one finally got through.
After several failed attempts to bring the story of the rise and scandalous fall of the '80s pop stars to the screen, Leonine, together with star producers Wiedemann & Berg (Dark, The Lives of Others), are currently shooting the feature, which is expected to wrap in December. Elan Ben Ali and Tijan Njie and (see above) star as Fabrice Morvan and Robert Pilatus, the top-charting pop R&B duo out of Munich who became global stars in the 1980s, scoring three No. 1 hits in the U.S. But the duo had a dirty secret: they were a fake band, created by music producer Frank Farian. Pilatus and Morvan never did their own singing, instead lip-syncing to the voices of two other artists. At the height of their fame, Milli Vanilli won big at the Grammys but the truth soon emerged, and the group came toppling to earth, dropping from superstardom to become a punchline. After a failed comeback attempt, Pilatus' life spiraled out of control. In 1998, he was found dead in a Frankfurt hotel room of a suspected alcohol and prescription drug overdose.
When the world discovered that Milli Vanilli was a fake band, the group became a laughing stock. Similar to Elijah McCoy's name becoming synonymous with quality- aka real McCoy- Milli Vanilli's name came to represent fraudulence. At the time, an artist lip-syncing was a cardinal sin to a public that expected authentic talent from its musical acts. Flash forward to today, and the same standards have evaporated. Pretty much every pop artist is a corporate invention with a team of unsung talents propping up the illusion. Only a handful of pop stars write their own lyrics, and the few that do use obvious autotune to conceal their shortcomings as singers, and no one bats an eye. Suffice it to say, Milli Vanilli might have been ahead of their time.