Yesterday, the Hollywood Reporter broke the news that screenwriter Alan Wenkus is writing the authorized screenplay of George Jones' life for the film No Show Jones. Nancy Jones, the Possum's widow and fourth wife, tells Rolling Stone Country she's been entirely impressed by Wenkus's commitment to the project.
Jones says that Wenkus, who wrote the screenplay for the upcoming N.W.A. film Straight Outta Compton, came onboard after reading an early script for the biopic.
"He loved it, and he loves George," Jones says. "We brought him to town, absolutely loved him, and we've been working together since November. He understands what I'm wanting. I don't want any lies — I want it exactly the way George started the [script] when he started it six years ago."
Jones says she has sat with Wenkus for nearly 10 interviews so far, answering the writer's questions about the "He Stopped Loving Her Today" singer's childhood, love of country music and even his relationships, including his tumultuous marriage to country star Tammy Wynette.
"We'll definitely have Tammy in there. She was a big part of his life, and I love Tammy. I thought the world of Tammy and we ended up being best friends. I have quite a bit of things [in the script] that we've talked about, me and her," says Jones. "I will do her justice. If George was a butt with her, I'll tell that too. It will be an honest, honest movie."
Jones is an executive producer of the film, and recently submitted her ideas for casting. She says she'd like to see Bradley Cooper or Brad Pitt play her late husband and, in her role, Ashley Judd or Sandra Bullock.
"Sandra reminds me of me anyway," says Jones. "But we don't know yet. They're fixing to let me know probably in another month who they're going to [cast]."
Regardless of who fills the Country Music Hall of Famer's shoes, Jones is adamant about No Show Jones being an authentic portrayal of the man widely considered the greatest country music singer to ever live. Jones died April 26th, 2013, from respiratory failure.
In Wenkus, Nancy Jones has an equally focused partner. "We wanted to let the world know who George Jones is," she says. "To me, he really made country music. He never strayed away from his roots."
In April, Jones opened the George Jones Museum in downtown Nashville. Its many exhibits chronicle the singer's life from his upbringing in Texas to the rise, fall and rebirth of his career.