The life and abrupt death of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. is a subject that has inspired filmmakers to try to craft the perfect biopic for years. Directors such as Paul Greengrass and The Butler’s Lee Daniels have been stuck in development hell on their planned projects, and now here comes Oliver Stone, who has his Any Given Sunday star Jamie Foxx ready to take the lead.
According to The Wrap, Foxx is in talks for the role, with Stone in negotiations with DreamWorks and Warner Bros. to direct Kario Salem’s draft of a script originally written by Ronald Harwood. DreamWorks nabbed the rights to King’s story in 2009, which crucially included the permission to use his famous “Dream” speech, as protected by copyright.
Salem has spent years conducting interviews and doing research for the film, and it would appear that the King family will support this one; several members are to get executive producer credits. Securing their approval has been key to any King biopic, as both Daniels and Greengrass have found to their detriment. Stone, of course, is known for his biopics, including JFK, Nixon and W. King seems like a prime subject for him to tackle.
Foxx will next be seen in The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (due out April 18) and is shooting the Annie remake.