Berlin abuzz with rumours of Tom Hanks movie project

( dpa )- Tom Hanks is planning a movie about a US-born pop singer who became an idol from East Germany to Siberia after embracing communism and settling in East Berlin in the early 1970s.

For more 15 years Dean Reed was a hero in the socialist East Bloc, where his concerts were foot-stomping sell-outs until his body was fished out of a Berlin lake in June 1986.

At first, it was rumoured the Denver-born singer was murdered by the East German Stasi (secret police) to prevent him from returning to America, after becoming disillusioned with life in the east.

More confusion arose when the East German news agency ADN put out a deliberately misleading statement, suggesting Reed had died as a result of a "tragic accident."

In fact, Reed had taken his life in a moment of despair, when he was suffering from depression and was estranged from his third wife, East German actress Renate Blume .

Before committing suicide, he'd even penned a dramatic note to East German leader Erich Honecker , spelling out his private and professional turmoil.

Spokesmen at the Babelsberg Film Studios, south-west of Berlin, refused to comment on reports that a start was about to be made on the movie project, which bears the working title Comrade Rockstar .

"Naturally, we'd be delighted if Tom Hanks makes a film here. But until contracts have been signed we can make no comment," said one official.

If, as expected, the film gets the go ahead, Hanks, a two-time Academy Award-winning actor-writer and movie director, will take on the role of the singer.

Reed's first success was in Latin America where his records began to sell in the early '60s. A pacifist, he swiftly ripened into a Marxist in the revolutionary climate of South America.

"Wherever I went I was mobbed," Reed once told this reporter. "I was always sending my mother photos of myself being helped through the crowds."

Reed was arrested three times for staging anti-American protests in Chile, Argentina and later in Italy, usually against the US involvement in Vietnam.

Later in 1977, following his move to East Berlin, Reed starred in El Cantor, a movie he wrote, directed and starred in, depicting the life of Victor Jara who was tortured by Chile's military after the overthrow of President Salvador Allende in the early 1970s.

The movie, shot on location in Sofia, was shown repeatedly on East German television in the 1980s. Reed had hired 10,000 extras from the Bulgarian Youth League Komsomol specially for the film.

At the height of his East Bloc popularity, Reed was awarded the Soviet Peace Prize medal, flying to Moscow for the award ceremony.

Oscar winner Hanks has long been intrigued by the east-west nature of the Reed story. In 2004, he flew to Berlin to meet some of the singer's former show-biz acquaintances, and talk with his widow, Renate.

During his research he also visited the spot by the Zeuthener See (lake), where the singer's car was found abandoned on the shore, the night he killed himself, aged 47.

During that Berlin visit, Hanks announced that he had secured the film rights to Dean Reed's life from the singer's family, and had been given the go-ahead from the US DreamWorks Studios to produce and star in a movie about the Red Square Elvis.

Blume first met Reed in 1974 when making Kit and Co, a film in which she and Reed played lovers. They married in 1981. But their relationship was stormy, with the actress allegedly describing Reed as "a poor American showman" when their marriage later soured.

Armenian political analyst: We saw Pashinyan's real image in Munich
Armenian political analyst: We saw Pashinyan's real image in Munich
Armenia violates ceasefire with Azerbaijan 22 times on Feb. 15-16
Armenia violates ceasefire with Azerbaijan 22 times on Feb. 15-16
Turkey condemns Syria for adopting resolution on so-called "Armenian genocide"
Turkey condemns Syria for adopting resolution on so-called "Armenian genocide"
Loading Bars
Iraqi security forces kill one, wound seven in Baghdad: sources
France watching Italian situation closely: Health Minister
Doctor dies of coronavirus infection in south China
Italy reports third coronavirus death
President Ilham Aliyev expresses condolence to Turkey’s president
Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry expresses condolences to Turkey
9 killed in magnitude 5.9 earthquake near Turkey-Iran border (UPDATE)
Russian Innovation Center talks Uzbekistan’s benefits from mutual co-op
Four killed, two injured in central Philippines car crash
Number of injured after earthquake in Iran rises to 75
Bus accident in south Thailand kills 2, injures 18
Iran reveals voter turnout in parliamentary elections
Final results of parliamentary election announced for Tehran
Health official says coronavirus outbreak in Iran 'serious concern' for Georgia
Rouhani says US sanctions similar to coronavirus
Final results of 85 constituencies announced in Iranian parliamentary elections
Vote counting over parliamentary elections ends in 24 Iranian provinces
Kazakhstan's vehicles producers to enter more foreign markets
Foreign currency rates rise in Iran due to FATF outcome
IFC talks on projects implemented in Georgia
Weekly review of Georgian capital markets
Volume of industrial production to increase in Uzbekistan
Iran’s SEO reacts to FATF decision to blacklist Tehran
President of Kazakhstan appoints new Ambassador to Ukraine
Ilam Customs confirms closure of Iran-Iraq border due to coronavirus
President Ilham Aliyev’s visit to Italy to open new route from Asia to Europe: Ukrainian expert
Volume of cargo transshipment via Turkish Port of Botas disclosed
MP: Azerbaijan’s ties with Italy reach new level
Iran’s crude steel production grows
Preliminary results of parliamentary elections in Tehran province announced
Electricity generation in Iran’s Khuzestan province revealed
Iran’s Ardabil province to join Int’l North-South Transport Corridor
Total capital of Central Bank of Iran grows
Oil products to be put up for sale at Iran Energy Exchange
MiG-29k fighter jet crashes near Goa, India
Sanders scores decisive win in Nevada, Biden headed for second-place finish
Armenia violates ceasefire with Azerbaijan 21 times on Feb.22- Feb.23
Azerbaijani gas to give leverage to Italy in talks with other suppliers: French expert
At least 7 dead in Ecuador traffic accident
China’s LNG demand to drop amid coronavirus outbreak
President Ilham Aliyev completed state visit to Italy (PHOTO)
President Ilham Aliyev and first lady Mehriban Aliyeva viewed Sistine Chapel and St. Peter's Basilica in Vatican (PHOTO)
First Vice-President Mehriban Aliyeva awarded highest Papal Order of Knighthood in Vatican (PHOTO)
Sanders projected for decisive win in Nevada, Biden on track for second place
At least 7 dead in Ecuador traffic accident
Shooting reported at shisha bar in Germany's Stuttgart, no injuries
9 dead, 5 injured as vehicle falls into deep gorge in Indian-controlled Kashmir
5.5-magnitude quake hits West Chile Rise
Now to end 'long suffering': South Sudan's former rebel leader sworn in as first vice president
IMF chief, Argentina flag path to new debt deal after G20 meet in Riyadh
France's Macron: unclear if EU-Britain to have trade deal by year-end
Ten new cases of coronavirus in Iran, two dead
Roger Waters of Pink Floyd joins Assange supporters in London protest march
Ethiopia plans to release interim jet crash report as probe continues
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Provincial Assembly of Pakistan adopts resolution on reaffirming respect to territorial integrity of Azerbaijan
EU-wide Karabakh rally held in Berlin
Facial recognition company Clearview AI probed by Canada privacy agencies
Azerbaijani CEC annuls voting results of one more polling station
Azerbaijani CEC upholds district election commission’s decision on 30th Surakhani constituency
Azerbaijani CEC annuls voting results of one more polling station
Director General: Central Bank to meet Iran's trade needs
Azerbaijani CEC annuls voting results of one poling station in Yevlakh constituency
Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev, First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva meet with Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal (Photo)
Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev, First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva meet with Pope Francis in Vatican (PHOTO)
Political analyst: Signing of Joint Declaration by Azerbaijan with G7 member Italy is extremely important
Iran’s Guardian Council discloses number of complaints during parliamentary elections
Meeting on parliamentary election results kicks off in Azerbaijani CEC
Production of some industrial products down in Iran
Production of some chemicals and petrochemicals up in Iran
Iran’s Shazand Oil Refining Company opens tender to buy equipment
EU-wide Karabakh rally to be broadcast live (PHOTO)
Production of mining materials up in Iran
Azerbaijan’s PMD Group continues construction of residential complex in Sumgayit
WHO concerned about coronavirus cases with no clear link
Azerbaijan's dairy products become more popular abroad
Kazakhstan prohibits tours to coronavirus-exposed countries
Uzbekistan boosts production of light vehicles
Central Bank's short-term notes put up on Baku Stock Exchange
Kazakhstan’s oil producing company announces tender to buy UPS
Italy to support protection and promotion of Azerbaijani historical monuments
Small enterprise to open in Azerbaijani district
Kazakhstan’s oil producing Karazhanbasmunai company to buy fuel via tender
SOCAR discloses payments to state fund
Turkmengas State Concern opens tender for equipment inspection
Iranian currency rates for Feb. 22
Turkey increases exports of citrus fruit to Georgia
ERIELL continues development of new wells in Uzbekistan
Turkey increases export of petroleum and petroleum oils to Georgia
Malaysia says American coronavirus case now tests negative for virus
Georgia cuts knitwear exports to Turkey
Georgia increases export of flours, meals and pellets to Turkey
Kazakh oil extracting company Ozenmunaygaz opens tender to rent equipment
Weekly review of Azerbaijan's precious metals market
Weekly review of Azerbaijani currency market
Uzbekistan holds talks with Egypt's El Sewedy Electric
Azerbaijan is not only of strategic importance to Italy, but whole EU: Dutch expert
US sends protective equipment to Uzbekistan amid coronavirus spread
Iran announces parliamentary election results in more constituencies
Over 6,000 kilometers of roads laid in Azerbaijan within five years
Georgia increases export of ferro-alloys to Turkey
All news