Register  |   Log In  |  
Sign up to our weekly newsletter    
Search   
Empire Magazine and iPad
Follow Me on Pinterest YouTube Tumblr
Empire
Trending On Empire
Empire's New Tom Cruise Cover
The Jameson Empire Awards 2014
Vote: The Greatest 301 Movies Of All Time!
Rebecca Hall:
My Movie Life

The actress picks the movies that shaped her
Mountain Dew Green Screen
Register Now to see X-MEN First Class!
Movie News

LATEST HEADLINES
YESTERDAY
The Empire Podcast #107: Lukas Moodysson, Marc Webb, Avi Arad
Let's go Easter Egg hunting!
Spielberg Plans The Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara
Yet another potential directing job
First Jersey Boys Trailer
Clint Eastwood's musical adaptation is heating up
More Movie News

RELATED NEWS
19 February 2014
Terrence Howard On For Empire
No, we haven't hired him. It's a TV drama...
More Movie News

RELATED REVIEWS
Oldboy (2013)
Empire Star Rating
Inside Man
Empire Star Rating
She Hate Me
Empire Star Rating
Ten Minutes Older - The Trumpet
Empire Star Rating
25th Hour
Empire Star Rating
More new cinemas releases
DVD & Blu-ray releases

James Brown Biopic Planned
By Spike Lee and Brian Grazer

27 December 2006  |  Written by   |  Source: Variety

submit to reddit

He was the Godfather of Soul, a legend for half his lifetime, and one of the greatest showmen the world has ever seen. James Brown died on Christmas Day 2006 at the age of 73 of pneumonia in a Georgia Hospital, having been working and performing right up until the end. But two of his biggest fans, Spike Lee and Brian Grazer, today revealed that they're planning to make a biopic of his life, with Grazer producing and Lee wielding the megaphone.

But wait! Before you shout, "Have you no respect for the dead?" hold on just a cotton-pickin' minute. This is no attempt to cash in on a man's death. This is a project that's been in the works for some time - Brown himself worked with original screenwriter Steve Baigelman (the writer and director of Feeling Minnesota), and with Jezz and John Henry Butterworth (upcoming Nicole Kidman project Headhunters), who turned in the most recent draft. But today's news, that Spike Lee plans to direct, means that he's going to take another pass at the script before the film goes into production.

And don't expect to see this baby terribly soon. Lee has his bound-to-be-controversial LA riots film next on his slate, followed by an Inside Man sequel, both of which Grazer is also producing. In fact, the Brown film isn't expected to go into production until 2008, so we'll have to wait to see the ups and downs of the Godfather's turbulent career (he served prison sentences for theft and drug offences, spent a brief time as a boxer and a baseball pitcher, was married four times and never learned how to read music). Since the rights to his life story include the rights to his music, one thing's for sure - it's going to sound fantastic.

Have Your Say
To comment on this, and all articles, register for free or login now.

World Exclusive: The New Wall-E Trailer
This kicks shiny metal butt!
Exclusive: Optimus Prime Arrives!
World exclusive look at Transformers!

Your Comments

RE: Spike Lee
Duplicate post More

Posted by Companero at 13:39 on 08 January 2007 | Report This Post

RE: Spike Lee
Duplicate post. More

Posted by Companero at 13:37 on 08 January 2007 | Report This Post

RE: Spike Lee
Spike Lee is an fascinating filmmaker; even the films that don't work (SHE HATE ME, GIRL 6 instantly spring to mind) are interesting. Who care if he's linked to the majority of African-American projects and at the end of the day, why shouldn't he? He's an exceptionally good AMERICAN filmmaker who happens to be black - there's no agenda at play, as far as I can see. Considering how integral the use of music (particularly that of his father Bill Lee or Terence Blanchard) is to Lee's films, I'm More

Posted by Companero at 13:37 on 08 January 2007 | Report This Post

*yawn*
Well bugger me backwards with a barge pole, i'm astonished. A biopic of a newly dead Musician? I'm so surprised you could fit a basketball in my mouth. Now all we need to do is knock off Bob Dylan and Chuck Berry and let the Oscar race for 2008 begin.... More

Posted by bruised_blood at 18:23 on 30 December 2006 | Report This Post

RE: don't spike the guy
The poor guys not even cold yet. Talk about insensitive! More

Posted by Sutty at 16:45 on 29 December 2006 | Report This Post

RE: don't spike the guy
hell, what they gonna do? Film at his funeral?! At least wait until he's stopped breathing before they start filming, christ! And I agree with the Spike Lee thing. Why does his name HAVE to come up whenever a prominent African Amercian icon dies?? aha, they certainly don't piss about do they?  I suppose there was bound to be a biopic about him eventually, he was such a legend.  Look at the success Walk the Line and Ray made for instance (not to ment More

Posted by Super Hans at 12:29 on 29 December 2006 | Report This Post

don't spike the guy
It's too predictable and lazy to be jumping on the 'Spike Lee thing'. Face it - being one of the very few high profile directors who also happens to be black, it's inevetiable Lee is going to be linked with films about African American public figures - whether he wants to be or not. That said, whenever, or if ever, a film a about JB is eventually made I'm not really bothered whether Spike Lee directs it. Whoever takes on the mighty task I just hope they deliver like the great man did himself and More

Posted by Smokey Dog at 01:58 on 28 December 2006 | Report This Post

Gee what a surprise!!!
Another pic centered around the life of a flawed musician, I'm sure he has an interesting story to his life, but to be honest haven't we done this genre for the time being? We've had RAY, GREAT BALLS OF FIRE, WALK THE LINE, SID AND NANCY, LABAMBA, WHATS LOVE GOT TO DO WITH IT, etc etc, and those were just the ones I could think of in a hurry, no to mention all the godawfull Elvis films that are kicking around. enough already give the man some peace for a while. More

Posted by boredbluekoala at 23:19 on 27 December 2006 | Report This Post

RE:
Fuckin hell, what they gonna do? Film at his funeral?! At least wait until he's stopped breathing before they start filming, christ! And I agree with the Spike Lee thing. Why does his name HAVE to come up whenever a prominent African Amercian icon dies?? More

Posted by pablohoolio at 23:04 on 27 December 2006 | Report This Post

Fast ai? Lee's a busy man too. More

Posted by doctorolorinbats1975 at 16:08 on 27 December 2006 | Report This Post

Why is it all films about black people have to have Spike Lee's name attatched to them, he even kicked up a stink when Mann got Ali More

Posted by CameronJames at 14:05 on 27 December 2006 | Report This Post


CURRENT HIGHLIGHTS
The Making Of Locke: A Filmmaker's Journey
Steven Knight takes us through six pitstops (via Heston Services)

The 10 Most Exciting Movies At Cannes 2014
Empire's pick of the Croisette's finest

Tom Hardy: A Viewer's Guide
The essential, the recommended, the one for the fans... and the one to avoid

Ten Things To Know About The Spooks Movie
Under the hood of The Greater Good

Who’s In Spider-Man’s Sinister Six?
A bluffer’s guide to the planned spin-off from the Amazing Spider-films

14 YouTube Videos Every Game Of Thrones Fan Should Have Watched By Now
From goats singing the theme tune to every death in under three minutes

Hollywood's Biggest Names On Their Favourite Films
Stars and directors like Nolan, Whedon, Wright and Ford on the films that inspire them

Subscribe to Empire iPad edition
Get The Empire iPad Edition Today

Subscribe and save money on annual digital subscription

Subscribe today
Buy single issues

Subscribe to Empire magazine
Get Limited Edition Collectable X-Men Art Cards

Subscribe today and get 6 issues of Empire plus a set of collectable X-Men Art Cards for only £20!

Subscribe today

Get 12 Issues Of Empire For Just £25
Receive limited edition subscribers-only covers every month Subscribe today!
Empire's Film Studies 101 Series
Everything you ever wanted to know about filmmaking but were afraid to ask...
The Empire iPad Edition
With exclusive extras, interactive features, trailers and much more! Download now
Home  |  News  |  Blogs  |  Reviews  |  Future Films  |  Features  |  Interviews  |  Images  |  Competitions  |  Forum  |  iPad  |  Podcast  |  Magazine Contact Us  |  Empire FAQ  |  Subscribe To Empire  |  Register
© Bauer Consumer Media Ltd  |  Legal Info  |  Privacy Policy  |  Bauer Entertainment Network
Bauer Consumer Media Ltd (company number 01176085 and registered address 1 Lincoln Court, Lincoln Road, Peterborough, England PE1 2RF)