These days, music biopics are nearly as commonplace on the big screen as summer action flicks. That was hardly the case four decades ago when Gary Busey delivered a career-defining role as the titular subject ofTheBuddy HollyStory, which was released May 18, 1978.
The path to get to the role wasn’t an easy one for Busey, who was previously attached to a project titledNot Fade Awaywhere he played Jerry Allison, the drummer for Holly’s band the Crickets. It was to be marketed as a fictional tale set in 1957 and based on a period of one month on the road during the “black tour,” with Holly's trio the only white act on a package tour. Filming began in September 1975, but when it was just one-third completed, the studio shut it down due to concerns about the controversial theme of race relations. Not to mention, there was opposition from Holly’s family and widow, Maria Elena. Even Weezer dedicated a song to Buddy Holly!