One of the truly great pastimes of the Taylor Swift Era is trying to figure out which celebrities inspired Taylor’s musical tales of heartbreak and inevitable recovery and triumph. We’ve been pretending not to move our feet to “Shake It Off” all summer, but now we have some insight into the possible meaning of the line “haters gonna hate, hate, hate” with confirmation that folk singer Joni Mitchell put the kibosh on a Swift-fronted biopic.
The movie, which Swift has been eyeballing since 2012, would have been based on Sheila Weller’s book Girls Like Us, a group biography of Mitchell, Carole King, and Carly Simon. Alison Pill of The Newsroom fame was rumored for the part of King, with John Sayles and Kate Jacobs on board as screenwriter and director, respectively. But Mitchell was apparently not enamored with the gossipy content of Weller’s book, nor with the possibility of being represented on film by America’s biggest pop star, telling the film’s producer, “All you’ve got is a girl with high cheekbones. It’s just a lot of gossip, you don’t have the great scenes.” By putting her foot down on the project, Mitchell appears to have killed off our only chance to see Swift performing “A Case of You” while pensively smoking cigarettes, which is tragic in its own right.