Chadwick Boseman to star in James Brown biopic
Chadwick Boseman attends the "Man Of Steel" world premiere at Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center on June 10, 2013 in New York City.Photo: Image by Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images
LOS ANGELES -- Actor Chadwick Boseman has been tapped to portray “Godfather of Soul” James Brown in an upcoming biopic, Variety reports. Boseman is perhaps best known for playing baseball great Jackie Robinson in "42" earlier this year.
The as-yet-untitled film, which has been years in the making, will trace Brown's life from his poverty-stricken Georgia childhood to his rise as an influential performer. The singer, whose biggest hits included “I Got You (I Feel Good)” and “Papa’s Got a Brand New Bag," also had several brushes with the law throughout his lifetime, including several arrests for domestic violence. He died in 2006 at 73.
The film's director, Tate Taylor, helmed the film version of "The Help" in 2011. Also taking an active role in the flick is Rolling Stones singer Mick Jagger, whose company, Jagged Films, is producing. Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant and Taylor announced that much of it would be shot in Mississippi.
Producer Brian Grazer has reportedly been trying to make a big-screen version of Brown's life since 2001. Several actors, including Eddie Murphy and Wesley Snipes, had been vying for the role since the film was first announced. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Spike Lee was attached to direct the movie at one time.
Boseman's next film, the NFL-themed “Draft Day,” stars Kevin Costner.