Did Mick Jagger Want to Star in ‘The Rocky Horror Picture Show’?

In their own way, Mick Jagger and The Rocky Horror Picture Show each embody classic rock androgyny. Because of this, it would only make sense for Jagger to play the film’s most famous character, Dr. Frank-N-Furter. So did Jagger ever want the role or is that only a rumor? And are there any connections between Jagger and the star of The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Tim Curry?

Mick Jagger wearing a hat
Mick Jagger | Adger Cowans/Getty Images

The superstar Mick Jagger watched ‘The Rocky Horror Show’ with

First, some background. The Rocky Horror Picture Show includes great British humor, rock ‘n’ roll, and transvestism. Jagger is a British rock star with a sense of humor who occasionally wore dresses. The Rocky Horror Picture Show and Jagger seem like a match made in B movie heaven.

Jagger was certainly interested in The Rocky Horror Show, the musical that inspired The Rocky Horror Picture Show. According to the book Straight Whisky: A Living History of Sex, Drugs, and Rock ‘n’ Roll on the Sunset Strip, the musical became so popular Jagger couldn’t get a ticket for its final performance in London. Months later, Jagger did get a ticket for The Rocky Horror Show and watched it from the front row with fellow rock ‘n’ roll luminary John Lennon.

“The Time Warp”

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Did Mick Jagger want to play Dr. Frank-N-Furter?

Over the years, a rumor floated around that Jagger wanted to play Frank-N-Furter in the musical’s film adaptation. Kory Grow of Rolling Stone asked producer Lou Adler if there was any truth to the rumor. 

“Oh, I don’t know,” Adler replied. “I don’t know if he ever seriously would have played it. I’d like to see him do the narrator role in [the remake], though. That would be good. Tim Curry’s look in the movie must have had some influence on [David] Bowie and Mick and a lot of artists at that time.”

“(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction”

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Adler might not remember what happened, however, AZ Central says Jagger never actually auditioned for The Rocky Horror Show. Ultimately, the role of Frank-N-Furter went to Tim Curry, the same actor who portrayed the character onstage. Curry’s performance would become one of the defining performances of his career. Many of his subsequent performances would recall the glorious camp of his Frank-N-Furter.

Mick Jagger’s connection to Tim Curry

Oddly enough, Jagger had the opportunity to play another one of Curry’s iconic roles. According to the book Mick: The Wild Life and Mad Genius of Jagger, Jagger was offered $2 million to play the role of Daniel Francis “Rooster” Hannigan in Annie, another film adaptation of a musical. Jagger turned down the role. Instead, he wanted to play Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart in the Oscar-winning biopic Amadeus. However, the role went to Tom Hulce, who is currently most known for playing Quasimodo in Disney’s The Hunchback of Notre-Dame. Who knows if audiences would have accepted a star as big as Jagger in the role of Mozart. Frank-N-Furter might have been a better role for Jagger — but it was not to be.