Blinded By the Light movie: How did Bruce Springsteen inspire the real-life story?

6 August 2019, 16:25

Blinded by the Light
Picture: Entertainment One/Warner Bros/Getty

By Tom Eames

Blinded By the Light is the latest in a line of music icon-inspired movies, and this time it's all about The Boss himself: Bruce Springsteen.

The feel-good movie of the summer revolves around one young man's love for the 'Born in the USA' American singer, but what inspired the film, what songs appear on the soundtrack and when is it released?

Here's all you need to know:

  1. Blinded by the Light release date: When does it come out at UK cinemas?

    The film is released at cinemas on Friday, August 9.

  2. Blinded by the Light trailer: Is there a teaser video?

    There is indeed!

    Watch the full-length trailer for the movie above.

  3. Blinded by the Light plot: What is the film about and what inspired it?

    Bruce Springsteen
    Bruce Springsteen. Picture: Getty

    The film is centred around Javed (played by Viveik Kalra), a British teen of Pakistani origin, growing up in Luton in 1987.

    While dealing with the racial and economic problems of the era, he writes poetry in the hope of escaping any intolerances and the tough traditions of his father.

    However, when a classmate introduces him to the music of Bruce Springsteen, Javed compares his working-class life in The Boss's lyrics, and uses it to push forward in life.

    The film is inspired by the life of journalist Sarfraz Manzoor, and his love of Bruce Springsteen. Manzoor co-wrote the script, with director Gurinder Chadha and Paul Mayeda Berges.

    It is based on Manzoor's book Greetings from Bury Park: Race, Religion and Rock N’ Roll.

    Sarfraz Manzoor
    Sarfraz Manzoor. Picture: Getty

    Speaking about how Springsteen watched and loved the film, Manzoor told Sky News: "What's weird is for somebody whose work I know intimately and I know really well - he's obviously shaped me and I've been a fan of his for 32 years - the fact that he's aware of my story and has actually invested time in knowing about it and has seen the film.

    "Gurinder flew out to show it to him and he loves it. It just feels weird because for so long to be a fan and now to be somebody who's... he knows my work as much as I know his work.

    "It's not something you can really get your head round, it's quite hard to put into words. But I guess it feels validating... it sort of shows to me that all that effort and all that time and all those years spent travelling and seeing him, you know, it wasn't pointless, it did lead to something."

  4. Blinded by the Light cast: Who stars in the film?

    Blinded By The Light cast
    Picture: Getty

    Viveik Kalra plays the lead role of Javed.

    There are also supporting roles for Hayley Atwell, Dean-Charles Chapman, Aaron Phagura, Rob Brydon, Kulvinder Ghir, Nell Williams, and Sally Phillips.

  5. Blinded by the Light soundtrack: What songs appear?

    Blinded by the Light soundtrack
    Blinded by the Light soundtrack. Picture: Columbia/Legacy

    The film's score is by renowned Indian composer AR Rahman, who previously worked on the films Slumdog Millionaire, 127 Hours and many others.

    The official soundtrack - also released on August 9 - will feature 12 Bruce Springsteen songs, including two brand new tracks.

    The full tracklisting is:

    “Ode to Javed/Javed’s Poem,” A.R. Rahman
    “It’s a Sin,” Pet Shop Boys
    “The Sun Always Shines on T.V.,” a-ha
    “The Boss of Us All” (dialogue)
    “Dancing in the Dark,” Bruce Springsteen
    “You Should Be Listening to Our Music” (dialogue)
    “I Never Knew Music Could Be Like This” (dialogue)
    “The River,” Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band (Live at The “No Nukes” concert at Madison Square Garden in New York on Sept. 21, 1079)
    “Number One Paki Film” (dialogue)
    “Badlands,” Bruce Springsteen
    “Cover Me,” Bruce Springsteen
    “Thunder Road,” Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band (Live at The Roxy Theater in West Hollywood, Calif., on Oct. 18, 1975)
    “Get Outta My Way Fascist Pigs,” Amer Chadha-Patel
    “Do It for Me” (dialogue)
    “Prove It All Night,” Bruce Springsteen
    “Hungry Heart,” Bruce Springsteen
    “You, Me … and Bruce” (dialogue)
    “Because the Night,” Bruce Springsteen
    “Maar Chadapa,” Heera
    “The Promised Land,” Bruce Springsteen (Live at the Concert for Valor at the National Mall in Washington, D.C., on Nov. 11, 2014)
    “Blinded by the Light,” Bruce Springsteen
    “Born to Run,” Bruce Springsteen
    “I’ll Stand by You,” Bruce Springsteen
    “For You My Love,” A.R. Rahman