Saturday 24 March 2018

Coming soon to a screen near you - Farage: The Movie

Nigel Farage
Nigel Farage

Christopher Hope in London

The Hollywood film-maker behind Harry Potter and Batman has its sights set on a new celluloid hero. Step forward, Nigel Farage.

Warner Bros, the studio responsible for such blockbusters as Man of Steel and Gravity, is said to be keen to make a film about the former Ukip leader.

The entertainment giant is in talks on a project dramatising Farage's mission to take Britain out of the European Union.

One of the world's most successful film studios, Warner Bros is in touch with Arron Banks, the insurance millionaire who funded Leave.EU, to discuss a film based on his diary of the successful campaign.

Andy Wigmore, a spokesman for Banks, said: "We have had some very serious Hollywood people in touch with us who are going to buy the rights to the book. They want to buy the option on it."

Producers from Warner Bros, which is also behind the Harry Potter spin-off Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, are hoping to meet Farage and Banks when the pair visit the US for the inauguration of Donald Trump this month.

Banks's diary, entitled The Bad Boys of Brexit, which charts the highs and lows of the campaign, has proved an unexpected hit in bookshops.

Wigmore said that while the producers "have done a bit of research, effectively that book is like a screenplay so half the work has been done for them".

Any cash made from the film would go to charity, Wigmore said. "It is not like it is something we would personally benefit from. The Bad Boys of Brexit: the film. It is a comedy."

The book details how Banks ran the Leave.EU campaign with the help of Wigmore, his key aide, and Gerry Gunster, an American polling expert.

The trio worked closely with Farage, persuading him to take part in the famous Battle of the Thames when a flotilla of pro-Leave fishing boats was assailed by one carrying Bob Geldof, the Boomtown Rats singer.

Less successful ventures included a failed BPop concert which was due to feature members of pop band Bucks Fizz. Wigmore also disclosed the photograph of Farage with Trump in his apartment has made £200,000 in the sale of its media rights. He said the money will be split between two US and UK veterans' charities.

Newspapers and websites that have used the photo have had to pay a licensing fee of £450. "It has been used everywhere," Wigmore said.

It emerged last week that Nigel Farage will fly to the US this month ahead of the inauguration on January 20 at the invitation of Phil Bryant, the Mississippi governor who introduced him to Donald Trump before the election.

Nigel Farage is expected to celebrate the inauguration alongside a string of hand-picked guests and will take a seat on the platform to watch the swearing-in ceremony.

He will also attend a glitzy lunch, take part in the inaugural parade, attend the ball, galas and other events.

The presence of Farage is likely to frustrate Downing Street because so far Theresa May - the country's prime minister - has yet to meet the incoming president.


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