The biopic of singer James Brown is moving forward with producers starting the casting process.
Producer Brian Grazer told Rolling Stone that Eddie Murphy and Wesley Snipes were still being considered for the part of Brown, but it is still early in the casting process. “We’re going to start casting and we’re going to have to test lots of actors and be determined to pick the right one. No movie starts in a day. I’ve never loved a subject and not made the movie. Friday Night Lights took 13 years. American Gangster took seven or eight.”
Grazer has had the rights to the picture for almost a dozen years and even had the blessing of Brown, himself, before his untimely death. After Brown’s passing, though, he lost the rights and has only recently reacquired them.
Brian told the magazine that the movie would “encapsulate his whole life. You get a sense of how he grew up and how was beaten in a burlap sack as a child, so you get a sense of abandonment and abuse in how he grew up, which leads you into the young adult and his relationship with his band.
“Our focus would be when he was in late 30s, but we would capture the great high points and some of the really palpable low points of his life. We want to capture the string of amazing hits like It’s a Man’s Man’s Man’s World and Please, Please, Please. In our first draft, we had 30 performance pieces.”
Grazer is producing with Mick Jagger and has brought on Tate Taylor (The Help) to direct.