Alex Daoud is one of those only-in-South-Florida characters -- a big and boisterous former Miami Beach mayor who sparred with Muhammad Ali, spent 18 months in prison for bribery, and then wrote an unsparing book about it. Now film producer Philippe Martinez has bought the rights to his '80s-era tell-all, The Sins of South Beach, and plans to bring it to the silver screen.
Riptide spoke briefly to Daoud this afternoon -- and it seems that the ex-mayor is no stickler for creative control. Daoud's not sure what Martinez is envisioning with the film adaptation, or even whether he will be a major character. "I would hope that Phillipe would follow the book," he speculates, "but he has complete artistic authority. He does movies, I don't."
Daoud's most excited about the fact that the movie will be "almost completely" shot on location in Miami Beach. "To be candid with you, it's part of my redemption to the city, for the wrongs that I did," he ruminates. "It's going to really help out the economy."
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Time will tell, however, if this is a gift that Miamians won't ultimately wish they could return for a refund.
A quick jaunt over to IMDb reveals that though producer Martinez has over thirty movies to his credit, he's no Orson Welles -- or even the B-movie version. His Modigliani (2004), I Could Never Be Your Woman (2007), and The Flock (2007) star Andy Garcia, Michelle Pfeiffer, and Richard Gere -- but were all widely panned. The biopic of artist Amedeo Modigliani was slammed with a 4 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes' "Tomatometer", the lowest showing we've ever seen. (For context, the latest installment of the Fast and Furious franchise managed a relatively English Patient-esque 29 percent).
Anyway, there will be plenty of time to pan The Sins of South Beach once it's out, so we'll pace ourselves. In the meantime, who does Daoud expect will play him? "Somebody once wrote that if they ever made a movie about me," he says, "they would have to cast a combination of John Goodman and Fonzie Bear."