Bill Wyman: Sheffield Doc/Fest cancels ex-Rolling Stone’s appearance

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Bill Wyman met Mandy Smith when she was 13 and they married five years later

A film festival has dropped ex-Rolling Stone Bill Wyman from its bill after protests stemming from his relationship with a teenage girl in the 1980s.

The bassist had been due to do a Q&A session at June’s Sheffield Doc/Fest and appear at the European premiere of a documentary about him, The Quiet One.

The festival pulled the plug on both after receiving an online backlash.

The rocker courted controversy after he met Mandy Smith in 1984, when she was 13 and he was 47.

Prosecutors considered bringing charges against him two years later, but decided to not take action.

The pair married in 1989, when she was 18, but divorced two years later.

Representatives for Wyman are yet to respond to a request for comment about Sheffield Doc/Fest’s decision.

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Wyman and Smith were interviewed together by Terry Wogan in 1989

The Quiet One, directed by Oliver Murray, documents Wyman’s life as one of the original members of The Rolling Stones.

Responding to criticism of the line-up announcement on the festival’s Facebook page, organisers said: “We truly appreciate you alerting us to the issue. It has been passed on to our management who are taking this very seriously.”

A later message read: “Sheffield Doc/Fest has decided to cancel screenings of The Quiet One and the associated Q&A with Oliver Murray & Bill Wyman. All purchased tickets will be refunded.”

The documentary is still scheduled to have its world premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York on 2 May.

In 2013, Wyman revealed that he had volunteered to be interviewed by police in the wake of more recent celebrity sex scandals, but they declined.

“I went to the police and I went to the public prosecutor and said, ‘Do you want to talk to me? Do you want to meet up with me, or anything like that?’ and I got a message back, ‘No,'” he said. “I was totally open about it.”

Wyman left the Stones as a permanent member in 1992, but played at the band’s 50th anniversary shows at the O2 Arena in London in 2012.

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