A new movie about the early years of late guitar hero Jimi Hendrix went back to the editing room for modifications, and the director even had to reshoot some footage after one of Hendrix's ex-girlfriends complained to the Irish Film Board, which subsidized the movie.
All Is By My Side stars rapper André Benjamin (André 3000) as Hendrix and Hayley Atwell (“Captain America: The First Avenger”) as Kathy Etchingham, the woman who discovered Hendrix in London in 1966 and dated him for three years. The real Etchinham is alarmed by the way the movie came out. She recently told the New York Post’s Page Six that the film is inaccurate, "ridiculous," "sexist" and "dull as dishwater." The movie debuted at the Toronto Film Festival, which ran from September 5 to 15.
According to Page Six, Etchingham first became upset after Atwell told an interviewer that she enjoyed playing a lower-class girl from Manchester, England who "swears every line and is a chain-smoking wild child from the '60s, who had a notoriously tempestuous relationship with Jimi."
In reality, Etchingham is not from Manchester and was born to what she described as a "rather prosperous Irish family." She added that a scene in which Hendrix smashes a telephone into her head was completely fabricated.
"After he went to New York and fell in with the wrong crowd, he might have started to go off the rails, but in the early days he was a fresh, clearheaded and ambitious musician," she said.
After conducting research into All is By My Side, which was written and directed by John Ridley (who wrote 12 Years a Slave and U Turn), Etchingham learned the Irish Film Board was subsidizing the film, so she wrote the Irish Minister of the Arts to complain that the movie was defaming an Irish national. She also hired an attorney in Hollywood, who convinced Ridley "to take out the defamatory bits and reshoot scenes," reported the Post.
Etchingham added, "We had a lot of fun that first year in London, and I think it’s a shame that Ridley has made such a pig’s ear of the story."
Ridley did not return a request for comment.