Shel Silverstein Biopic in the Works

Upcoming film to document the highs and lows of legendary author's life and career

Shel Silverstein and Johnny Cash
ABC Photo Archives
Shel Silverstein performs on 'The Johnny Cash Show' in 1970
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Songwriter Shel Silverstein, who penned the Grammy-winning Johnny Cash classic, "A Boy Named Sue," will be the subject of a Hollywood biopic. Variety reports that among the film's producers will be famed director McG (Charlie Angels, 3 Days to Kill). Writing partners Chris Shafer and Paul Vicknair are adapting the screenplay from A Boy Named Shel: The Life and Times of Shel Silverstein, written by Lisa Rogak.

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The film will explore the personal and professional struggles of the prolific children's book author, whose best-sellers included The Giving Tree and A Light in the Attic. Silverstein also served as longtime contributor of satirical cartoons to Playboy and other publications.

Other hit songs Silverstein wrote include "One's on the Way" for Loretta Lynn and Seventies' pop smashes "Sylvia's Mother" and "The Cover of Rolling Stone" for Dr. Hook. In 1990, he was nominated for an Oscar and a Golden Globe for his song, "I'm Checkin' Out," sung by Meryl Streep in Postcards From the Edge.

Silverstein died of a heart attack in 1999 at age 68.