Mark Ruffalo has signed on to play jazz pianist Joe Albany in Low Down, which will depict the famous musician's relationship with his daughter Amy. The film will tell the story of the father-daughter relationship through the eyes of the daughter as she sees her talented but druggie father as he hangs out with his crazy friends in bars and hotels in the 60s and 70s. Jeff Preiss of Epoch Films will direct, and Topper Lilien and Amy Albany wrote the script based on Amy's book, Low Down: Junk, Jazz, and Other Fairy Tales From Childhood. Production will begin at the end of the year, after shooting The Avengers has concluded.
Though Albany's talent was akin to Charlie Parker, Miles Davis and Charlies Mingus, Albany became addicted to heroin in his later years. Born in Atlantic City in 1924, he studied piano and then joined Benny Carter's orchestra in 1943. By 1946 he was playing with Parker and Davis but things went downhill when he became addicted to drugs, lived a secluded life in Europe, and endured several divorces. He died in 1988 in New York City.