Limited series in development on country music icon Mickey Gilley and the rise and fall of his world-famous nightclub.
In what has been called “the Studio54 of the West,” Gilley’s Club, was a football-field-sized dancehall in the gritty refinery town of Pasadena, Texas—the center of the cowboy universe in 1978. With a capacity of 6,000, the largest honky-tonk on the planet was frequented by an assortment of patrons that ranged from oilfield roughnecks to movie stars. It was the place to see and be seen until it all ended in accusations, threats and a suspicious fire that would leave the club in ashes.
Due to Mickey Gilley’s musical talent and prowess as a showman, he has been credited by many as the man who changed country music forever by introducing the world to the “Urban Cowboy” cultural phenomenon that made being a cowboy cool. Music legends such as Willie Nelson, George Jones, Waylon Jennings, Charlie Daniels, George Strait, Johnny Lee, Fats Domino, Charley Pride, Loretta Lynn, Roseanne Cash, Ernest Tubb and Emmylou Harris all made appearances at Gilley’s.
In a "Walk the Line" meets "Bohemian Rhapsody" biographical drama, this series will chronicle the behind-the-scenes true story of Mickey’s career and the rise and fall of Gilley’s during the late 1970s through 1990. The story will detail how Mickey, a struggling country music singer/songwriter partnered up with local club owner, Sherwood Cryer, on a rundown dancehall where blue-collar locals, billionaire oil tycoons, cattle barons and some of the hottest names in music all mingled together.
Michael Becker of Imprint Entertainment and Joel Carpenter of JCProds secured the exclusive life rights option and will executive produce. Additional executive producers include Mickey Gilley with William Morrow HarperCollins author Taylor Moore (Down Range and Firestorm) and Zach Farnum as associate producer. Philip Levens ("Smallville," "Ascension") will serve as Executive Producer, Writer/Showrunner.
Country music artist Mickey Gilley has been wowing fans with his haunting sound of Louisiana rhythm and blues since 1957.
The Mississippi native grew up with his two famous cousins, Jerry Lee Lewis and Jimmy Swaggart, surrounded by the influence of music. Gilley made his chart topper debut with his song "Is It Wrong For Loving You," and gained a total of 39 Top 10 hits, 17 of those making it to the No. 1 spot.
After moving to Pasadena, Texas, in 1971, he opened his world famous honky-tonk nightclub, Gilley’s. In 1980 he appeared in the film “Urban Cowboy” alongside John Travolta, Debra Winger and Johnny Lee, and later went on to star in numerous popular television series including “Murder She Wrote,” “The Fall Guy,” “Fantasy Island” and “Dukes of Hazzard.”
He has earned numerous accolades including six ACM awards, a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and was inducted into the Texas Country Music Hall of Fame.
Now in his 80s, Gilley is currently on the Urban Cowboy Reunion Tour with Johnny Lee, playing more than 40 dates across the United States in 2019.