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Amy Winehouse’s dad Mitch addresses biopic backlash

The late singer's father described Marisa Abela as a 'great choice' for the role.

By Nick Reilly

Mitch Winehouse and a statue of the late Amy Winehouse (Picture: Alamy)

Mitch Winehouse, father of the late Amy Winehouse, has defended a forthcoming biopic of his daughter’s life.

The casting of Marisa Abela as Winehouse in Black To Black has been criticised by fans who say that the Industry actor bears little resemblance to the late singer.

Filming on the Sam Taylor Johnson-helmed biopic began in London earlier this month, with backlash emerging when initial photos from the set emerged.

Publicly defending the casting, Mitch told TMZ: “Marisa’s a great choice for the role, even if she doesn’t look exactly like Amy.”

The project has been authorised by the late star’s estate leading some to question whether the biopic will fully explore the issues that plagued Winehouse’s personal life before she died from alcohol poisoning at the age of 27 in 2011.

Winehouse’s father be portrayed by Eddie Marsan, while Jack O’Connell – known for his portrayal of Oliver Mellors in Netflix’s Lady Chatterley’s Lover (2022) and Gary Hook in ’71 (2014) – has signed up to play Winehouse’s former husband Blake Fielder-Civil.

The couple had an on-off relationship prior to getting married in 2007, and divorcing in 2009. Fielder-Civil has previously been accused of introducing Winehouse to drugs.

According to Deadline, Lesley Manville (Phantom Thread) has also joined the cast of Back To Black as Amy’s maternal grandmother.

Per a description (via Focus Features): “Back To Black will focus on Amy’s extraordinary genius, creativity and honesty that infused everything she did. A journey that took her from the craziness and colour of 90’s Camden High Street to global adoration – and back again, Back to Black crashes through the looking glass of celebrity to watch this journey from behind the mirror, to see what Amy saw, to feel what she felt.”

Taylor-Johnson, also known for her work on John Lennon biopic Nowhere Boy, has reunited with that film’s scriptwriter Matt Greenhalgh on Back To Black. Alison Owen, Debra Hayward and Nicky Kentish-Barnes are serving as producers.