Former Rolling Stone Bill Wyman had sex with wife when she was just 14 years old, now it's come back to haunt him
A new film about former bassist of The Rolling Stones, Bill Wyman, has been pulled from a leading documentary festival after multiple complaints were received about the musician's controversial relationship with his second wife, with whom he reportedly had sex when she was just 14.
'The Quiet One', a documentary about Wyman's life in rock and roll, was considered to be a high profile event for Sheffield Doc Fest, but has now been withdrawn.
The documentary tells the story of Wyman’s life as one of the original members of the Stones. While the musician was in the band, he had shot hours of footage, most of which remains unseen, and took thousands of photographs along with collecting a vast archive of memorabilia. Wyman also reportedly kept a detailed diary. The film is set to feature all of these, as well as interviews with Wyman, his family, and friends.
However, the official synopsis of the film doesn't mention Wyman’s second marriage to Mandy Smith, which has remained controversial, as it has been alleged that he had been grooming her since she was 13 years old before marrying her when she turned 18.
Wyman, who is 82-years-old now, met Smith when she was just 13 and he was 47, and the pair later tied the knot in 1989 when she was 18, but split up just two years later in 1991. Their relationship created waves when it was revealed that the couple allegedly had sex for the first time when Smith was just 14.
According to a spokesperson for the festival, it was confirmed that the screening and a Q&A with Wyman, former bassist for the Stones, had been indeed canceled, reports Deadline. However, the festival authorities gave no further information on the situation. News of the film festival revoking Wyman's documentary comes after the announcement of the screening on Facebook, which was met with numerous complaints about his relationship with Smith.
Sheffield received dozens of complaints about the planned screening, which was scheduled to be followed by a Q&A with Wyman and the documentary's director Oliver Murray, with most complainants saying that the film festival was giving a platform to an alleged sexual predator.
One user even tagged Sheffield's mayor, saying "you might want to look at the appropriateness of this line-up". Added another: “Did the events of 2018 go entirely unnoticed to your team. Do you endorse this behavior because it certainly looks like you condone it, feeling that he’s a suitable speaker for your festival. Appalling.” But an apparent fan of the musician said it would be good to hear Wyman "justify" his actions.
It was back in 2013 that Wyman first addressed his controversial relationship with Smith in an interview, saying he had gone to the police and been "open about it". "We all have a skeleton in the cupboard, it's just if you're a taxi driver in Halifax no one ever hears about it," he said. "But if you are celebrity every one does. In my case it was publicised to the world and that wasn't really fair, I don't think."
The documentary's world premiere is still set for 2 May at the Tribeca film festival in New York. In 2010, Smith – who has campaigned for the age of consent to be raised from 16 to 18 – said: “I was underage, but I was complicit. Now I see it in black and white.”