Brexit Campaign Leader and Trump's Preferred U.K. Ambassador Brushes Off Film Rumors
Nigel Farage says he hears such talk "every week," although his associate claims that Netflix is among those interested in the project, being pitched in Washington the day before Trump's inauguration later this month.
On Dec. 31, just at Brits were preparing to wave goodbye to a year some would rather forget, a rumor emerged that the story of the U.K. vote in June to leave the European Union and the man seen as the face of the so-called "Brexit" campaign, Nigel Farage, were to be given the movie treatment.
According to reports, studios, including Warner Bros., were eyeing The Bad Boys of Brexit, the diary of insurance millionaire Arron Banks, who had sunk some £8 million ($9.8 million) into the Leave.EU organization spearheaded by Farage. Chronicling the "anti-establishment crusade" of Banks' "madcap campaign" and his dealings with Farage, a political outsider now regarded internationally as the man behind the Brexit decision, the book had become an unexpected bestseller.
However, speaking on a British morning TV show on Tuesday, Farage – who famously campaigned with Donald Trump in the U.S. and crossed the Atlantic to celebrate immediately following the election results – brushed off talk of a movie.
"Every week I'm told I'm going to be in [U.K reality show I'm a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here] one week, Strictly Come Dancing the next, the House of Lords, and now there's [supposedly] a movie," he told Piers Morgan on ITV's Good Morning Britain.
Asked who should play him, he said: "He's dead, but Oliver Reed, obviously."
But Farage's attempts to dismiss the notion of a Brexit film came just two days after his associate and Banks' spokesman Andy Wigmore laid out further details.
"We have three interested parties in the rights to the book, and we will be meeting representatives from three studios, including a Netflix representative, on Jan. 19 in Washington, D.C.," he told Reuters on Sunday. "We have invited all of them [the studio representatives] to our pre-inaugural drinks party.... We have also invited many of Trump's team to the event."
And asked whether Farage would appear as himself in the film, Wigmore said he expected them all to make a "Quentin Tarantino appearance."
Despite having stepped down from his role as leader of the anti-immigration U.K. Independence Party earlier this year and currently having no seat in Parliament (he lost in the 2015 election), Farage is rarely out of the British papers.
Following the election of Trump, he became the first British politician to speak to the president-elect, and they posed in front of a pair of golden doors at Trump Tower for a widely shared photo. Farage was also criticized for an interview in which he referred to Barack Obama as a "loathsome individual" and "that Obama creature."
Trump famously tweeted that he wanted Farage to become the British ambassador to the U.S., to which the U.K. government responded by saying there was "no vacancy."