Ed Sheeran has revealed that he was the “third choice” for his role in the musical comedy Yesterday.
The 2019 film, written by Richard Curtis, starred Himesh Patel as Jack, an aspiring musician who wakes up from an accident to find that he is the only person in the world to remember The Beatles. He finds fame by pretending the band’s songs are his own.
Yesterday saw Sheeran play a version of himself, but the “Shape of You” singer has said that he was actually “third choice” for the part.
During an appearance on BBC Radio 1’s Kids Ask Difficult Questions segment, the singer said: “They asked Chris Martin, he said no. They asked Harry Styles, he said no, and I was third choice.”
The 30-year-old went on to say that the similarities between his real life and Jack’s life in the film – such as both being from Suffolk – led him to believe that Curtis (who is a close friend of Sheeran’s) had “sort of written this about me”.
“And I didn’t wanna ask, I didn’t wanna think that,” he said. “And then I got invited around Richard’s house with my wife… Richard’s talking to me about the film and he’s like, ‘We’re thinking of getting Chris Martin as the musical guy in the film,’ and I’m like, ‘Okay, but… Suffolk, music…’
“Anyways, they asked Chris Martin, he said no, they asked Harry Styles, he said no and I was third choice. That is 100 per cent true.”
However, the film’s director Danny Boyle has previously contested Sheeran’s claims, stating that he never approached Styles.
“He teased us rotten because he found out we’d asked Chris Martin first, so he never let us forget that,” Boyle told NME in 2019.
“And he accused us of asking Harry Styles second, which isn’t true, but we did ask Chris Martin first, so he teases us rotten about that but he gives as good as he gets.”
You can read The Independent’s three-star review of Yesterdayhere.
Sheeran has previously starred as himself in 2016’s Bridget Jones’s Baby.