zosia mamet will play patti smith in new biopic

Though Smith has her own ideas about casting.

by Alice Newell-Hanson
Jan 26 2016, 5:00pm

The TV networks are doubling down on the Patti Smith-Robert Mapplethorpe mythology this year. Not only is Showtime producing a serialized adaptation of Smith's memoir Just Kids, but HBO has also enlisted writer-director Ondi Timoner to head up a feature-length Mapplethorpe biopic, scheduled to begin production this summer.

Today, Deadline announced the first casting decisions for the Mapplethorpe movie. Matt Smith, aka the really young Doctor Who with the floppy hair, will play Mapplethorpe. And while he is literally one of the most British people ever (picturing him in any outfit that doesn't include a bow tie is hard enough, let alone a tasseled sleeveless suede vest), his cheekbones and hair are a good match for Mapplethorpe's.

For Patti, Timoner has cast Zosia Mamet. Once you get past the fact that the actress who blessed the world with Shoshanna from Girls will be playing the Godmother of Punk, it's a strong choice. Zosia's Shoshanna is surprisingly wise and shares a certain guilelessness with Smith. She is also no stranger to a bold hair transformation. Give her a choppy mullet and you can see it.

While there's been no more news about the Just Kids series, Patti herself has made her own casting preferences clear. She once told Entertainment Weekly, "I remember the very first time I saw Kristen Stewart and Rob Pattinson together, when they were younger, and I thought, Those two kids could have easily played us when they were first starting." She recommends Stewart for her charisma and Pattinson because "there's something in his eyes."


Text Alice Newell-Hanson
Photography Klaus Hiltscher via Flickr

Kristen Stewart
Patti Smith
Robert Mapplethorpe
Zosia Mamet
Matt Smith