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Thursday, 3 October, 2002, 10:17 GMT 11:17 UK
Napster movie planned
Shawn Fanning
Shawn Fanning is said to be collaborating on the film
Music network MTV is planning to make a film about the man behind collapsed online music swapping service Napster.

Shawn Fanning created the service, which allowed users to swap recorded material for free, when he was a 19-year-old student.

Now he may star in the film version of the story of how someone with no formal computer training who dropped out of college was able to create a service which at its height could boast 70 million users.

An MTV spokeswoman said: "Anything is possible and the fact that he may star as himself hasn't been ruled out."

Shawn Fanning
Fanning started the service when he was 19
The film is "tentatively" scheduled to be screened next year or 2004.

The spokeswoman said the 21-year-old would be collaborating on the screenplay, which will feature his childhood and life before and after Napster.

Lawsuits

The young entrepreneur named the company after his school nickname.

He set up the service with his uncle John Fanning three years ago with money raised from wealthy individuals.

But he was stopped in his tracks last year by lawsuits brought by major record labels.

Napster tried to reinvent itself as a legitimate subscription service, but when its sale to music giant Bertlesmann was blocked by a court last year, the company closed.

Its assets are currently being sold off by a bankruptcy court.

The spokeswoman said film-maker Alex Winter, whose acting screen credits include Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure, had been chosen to write and direct the film.

Fanning is also planning to executive produce the soundtrack, she said.



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13 Feb 01 | Business
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