Will Timothée Chalamet be singing when he plays Bob Dylan in new biopic? “Of course,” says director James Mangold

Timothée Chalamet
(Image credit: Timothée Chalamet)

Director James Mangold has confirmed that actor Timothée Chalamet will be providing his own vocals when he portrays Bob Dylan in an upcoming biopic rather than lip-syncing to existing recordings.

When asked by Collider if will be Chalamet’s voice that we hear in the as-yet-untitled movie, he replied “Of course!” Filming is set to begin in August.

“It’s such an amazing time in American culture and the story of Bob - a young 19-year-old Bob Dylan coming to New York with like two dollars in his pocket and becoming a worldwide sensation within three years,” Mangold said of his desire to make the film. “First being embraced into the kind of family of folk music in New York, and then of course kind of outrunning them at a certain point as his star rises so beyond belief.

“It’s such an interesting true story about such an interesting moment in the American scene, different characters from Woody Guthrie to Bob Dylan, to Pete Seeger to Joan Baez, all have a role to play in this movie,” Mangold explained.

Different musical biopics have taken different approaches when it comes to the vocal performances of their subjects. In Rocketman, for example - the fantastical take on the life of Elton John - lead actor Taron Egerton did all the singing, but in Queen yarn Bohemian Rhapsody, Freddie Mercury’s vocals are said to have been recreated by “an amalgamation of a few voices,” including that of Marc Martel, whose ability to replicate Mercury’s voice is pretty astonishing.

In Elvis, meanwhile, you can hear a lot of Austin Butler - at times blended with The King’s voice - but in I Wanna Dance with Somebody it’s almost all Whitney Houston, the movie’s subject, with just a few snippets from lead actor Naomi Ackie. 

Ben Rogerson

I’m the Deputy Editor of MusicRadar, having worked on the site since its launch in 2007. I previously spent eight years working on our sister magazine, Computer Music. I’ve been playing the piano, gigging in bands and failing to finish tracks at home for more than 30 years, 24 of which I’ve also spent writing about music and the ever-changing technology used to make it.