“Scatman (Ski-Ba-Bop-Ba-Dop-Bop)” – a novelty dance track featuring fast, part rap, part scattered and mostly absurd rhymes – is approaching thirty Years – topping the music charts all over the world, especially in Europe. Now, the man behind the song is getting the biography treatment.
John Larkin – better known by his stage name Scatman John – died of cancer in at
— just five years after his most famous track was first released. But the international production banner Trick Candle Productions has acquired the rights to his life story and is developing Scatman, documenting the musician’s “wild life and positive influence”.
By Stephen Basilone (Community, The Goldbergs) and Annie Mebane (
The Goldbergs, Shrinking), the film will include unparalleled access to the entire Scatman music library as well as private home videos, and will detail Larkin’s struggles with a lifelong stutter, bullying, domestic abuse, and his struggles with drug addiction and alcoholism. However, after meeting the love of his life in rehab, he overcame his addiction and achieved overnight success as Scatman John at the age of 18, selling hundreds of 10,000 CDs, won the gold record and platinum record. A generation later, his songs are still being sampled by DJs and artists, while his videos have over 57 million views on YouTube alone.
Tom Malloy ( Lansky , please I Dance ), Founder of Trick Candle Productions and Steve Valentine (MonsterHigh, The Walk) brokered a deal with Lee Newman, Larkin’s stepson who handled the estate.
“Today, more than ever, John’s message resonates and needs to be heard,” Valentine said. “He was a true legend who broke down the barriers that kept many people from realizing their dreams. We are thrilled to be working with Lee on this project and honored to bring the story of Scatman John to the big screen.”
Manfred Zahringer, Scatman John’s manager, and Malloy, Valentine and Newman will also serve as producers.