Selena Gomez is an inspired choice to star as Linda Ronstadt in new movie. Here's why

Selena Gomez will play Linda Ronstadt in an upcoming biopic.

Gomez teased the news Tuesday, posting a picture of Ronstadt’s memoir “Simple Dreams: A Musical Memoir” in an Instagram story.

Ronstadt confirmed the news Wednesday, sharing articles about the casting in Variety and Rolling Stone on Instagram and Facebook.

"It all started with a simple dream 👀💕" she posted.

The biopic is currently in preproduction.

Producers include the Arizona icon's longtime manager, John Boylan, and James Keach, who produced the 2019 documentary “Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice” and directed the 2022 documentary short "Linda and the Mockingbirds."

Keach also co-produced one of the most successful music biopics of all time, "Walk the Line," about the life of Johnny Cash.

A note on the website for Boylan's Great Eastern Music said Ronstadt and Gomez "recently spent a few hours at Linda's home discussing the project and getting to know each other."

No director has been named, nor has any additional casting been announced.

Linda Ronstadt's career from Arizona to Los Angeles and Broadway

"Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice" explores the career of the Tucson-born singer.
"Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice" explores the career of the Tucson-born singer.

Ronstadt was born in Tucson, Arizona, leaving home at 18 for Los Angeles.

After breaking through with "Different Drum" in 1967, Ronstadt became one of the most successful pop stars of her generation, selling out “stupid arenas,” as she calls them, on the strength of hits as huge as "You’re No Good" and "Blue Bayou" before using the leverage that success provided to follow her muse in a series of intriguing new directions.

She earned a Tony nomination for her starring role in "Pirates of Penzance" on Broadway, interpreted standards on a trilogy of albums tracked with famed arranger Nelson Riddle and honored the Mexican side of her heritage on mariachi albums sung in Spanish.

Her 1987 album, "Canciones de Mi Padre" became the biggest-selling non-English language album in U.S. history, going double platinum and earning a Grammy for Best Mexican/Mexican-American Album.

She also recorded two albums as part of a trio with Emmylou Harris and Dolly Parton.

The thread connecting all those very different projects is the strength of her vocal performances and her ability to get inside the essence of a song.

She's won lifetime achievement awards from both the Grammys and the Latin Grammys, taking her place in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2014.

Mas Canciones: How Linda Ronstadt won a battle to release the 'songs of her father'

What is Linda Ronstadt's medical condition?

By the time of that induction, Ronstadt had retired, unable to sing due to progressive supranuclear palsy, a degenerative disease originally misdiagnosed as Parkinson’s disease.

There’s a heartbreaking scene in “The Sound of My Voice” where Ronstadt talks about not being able to sing.

"Singing is really complex," she says. "And I was made most aware of it by having it vanish. I can still sing in my mind, but I can't do it physically."

Released in 2019, "Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice," a documentary whose ending will most likely bring you to tears, won the 2021 Grammy Award for Best Music Film.

In 2022, the Tucson Music Hall was renamed in her honor.

Why Selena Gomez is a solid choice to star as Linda Ronstadt

Selena Gomez and Taylor Swift at the 81st Annual Golden Globe Awards.
Selena Gomez and Taylor Swift at the 81st Annual Golden Globe Awards.

Gomez is a solid choice, a singer with two Grammy nominations who’s been acting her entire life, rising to fame as the star of the Disney Channel hit “Wizards of Waverly Place" from 2007-2012 after getting her feet wet on "Barney & Friends." More recently, she has starred alongside Martin Short and Steve Martin in Hulu’s “Only Murders in the Building.”

Her work on “Only Murders in the Building” has earned the star two Golden Globe nominations.

Like Ronstadt, Gomez is of Mexican descent.

And the resemblance may not be uncanny, but it's close enough for rock 'n' roll. The hardest part of watching music biopics is being able to accept that the person you’re watching is the artist they're portraying, and Gomez seems like she’d allow most people to suspend their disbelief.

Reach the reporter at ed.masley@arizonarepublic.com or 602-444-4495. Follow him on X, formerly known as Twitter@EdMasley.

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This article originally appeared on Arizona Republic: Selena Gomez to star as Linda Ronstadt in new movie on Arizona icon