The new film concerning Pink Floyd does not actually center on the band itself as much as it does the choir of boys that sang on the group's infamous hit “Another Brick in the Wall.”
The film, to be produced by Andy Harries, producer of The Queen
and The Damned United
, notes that he optioned the life story of music teacher Alun Renshaw who arrived at a struggling north London comprehensive (public) school called Islington Green School in the late 70s determined to shake things up. His class would go on to sing on the track, which ended up getting him fired.
Pink Floyd’s management first approached Renshaw, Islington Green’s music teacher, to borrow a school choir for a track. Renshaw took the class to Britannia Row studios without the permission of head teacher Margaret Maden, who described him as “somewhat anarchic.”
“We practiced around the piano at school, then recorded it,” said Renshaw in 2004. “I sort of mentioned it to the head teacher but didn’t give her the lyrics.”
The session was recorded without gaining the permission of Maden, who banned the teenagers from appearing in the media in relation to the song after she heard it. The teenagers were initially thrilled to have the opportunity to sing on the track, but were reportedly disappointed to see other children from an acting school lip-synching to their vocals on the video of the song, and on the BBC’s "Top Of The Pops" TV show. The Inner London Education Authority called the lyrics “scandalous," and the song was banned in South Africa, where it was supposedly blamed for inciting riots among pupils.
While the headmaster was originally peeved, Maden now says that, “it was part of a rich musical education.” While the plans are in the works, Harries admits he hasn’t gotten the rights to the song yet, and music-licensing rights from Pink Floyd are generally very hard to come by, at best. Keep your eyes on the news for any updates.