Rock ‘n’ roll’s seminal girl group is coming to the big screen. The behind-the-music story of sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll that was the Runaways is being turned into a new movie, titled
Neon Angels Cherry Bomb. The lives of former members Joan Jett, Cherie Currie and the late Sandy West will be explored in the film. Joan also serves as an executive producer.
The band, which started as a marketing ploy, went on to become one of the founding mothers of female rock. Brought together by producer Kim Fowley, the Runaways’ name was supposed to evoke “jailbait on the run.” Its teenage members were fledgling musicians when the band was founded in 1975. Despite their teenage temptress marketing, band members forged their own sound and cemented their reputations as talented rockers in their own right.
As Joan told Daily Variety this week:
“We certainly utilized to our advantage our image as teenage girls who wore titillating clothes. But we also became an excellent band and made it OK for girls to play rock ‘n’ roll. It got hard once people focused more on what we were wearing than what we were playing.”
The band broke up in 1979 and members Joan and Lita Ford went on to successful solo careers. Sandy passed away from cancer in October 2006.
It’s interesting that the story makes no mention of former members like Lita and the other revolving cast of characters who came and went from the lineup. But, since I’m a sucker for tough girls with guitars, I’m pretty excited to see how this turns out. Now, the big question is who should play the young Runaways? Suggestions? Oh, the possibilities …