Tracy Morgan in talks to be Redd Foxx for the Richard Pryor biopic

Tracy Morgan

by James White |
Published on

After years in development, The Butler’s Lee Daniels is finally putting the pieces together for one of his passion projects. 30 Rock veteran Tracy Morgan is in talks to play comedian and club owner Redd Foxx in a biopic of legendary funny man Richard Pryor.

The film, currently titled Richard Pryor: Is It Something I Said? after Pryor’s 1975 comedy album, will tell the story of his life. And what a tale: It’ll kick off with his less-than-perfect upbringing and troubled early years with his parents (played by Eddie Murphy, a man seen as one of the biggest talents influenced by Pryor’s wild style, and Taraji P. Henson) and his time being raised by his grandmother Marie Carter (Oprah Winfrey), who owned a brothel where the young man lived.

Mike Epps is locked in as Pryor himself, who became famous for his stand up work and in movies and TV, and infamous for his struggles with drugs and alcohol. Kate Hudson is playing his fourth (and technically sixth, since they were married first in 1981, divorced in 1982 and remarried in 2001, staying together until his death in 2005) wife, Jennifer Lee.

Foxx was a big influence on the younger Pryor’s life: he owned a local comedy club and encouraged the burgeoning comedian to hone his act and embrace his culture. If he does take the role, it’ll be the biggest of Morgan’s career comeback since he was badly injured in a car accident last year.

Daniels, working from a script by his Empire collaborator (and Butler writer) Danny Strong which has since been re-written by Bill Condon, aims to be in production this coming March.

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