In the wake of the success of “Straight Outta Compton” comes all sorts of news about other musical biopics headed our way:
Country vs. jazz
Two stories of legendary musicians may be vying for Oscar’s attention soon, IndieWire points out:
▪ Kansas City’s Don Cheadle is getting early awards buzz for making his directing debut, co-writing and starring in “Miles Ahead,” his passion project about jazz great Miles Davis. The movie earned a prime spot at the New York Film Festival, closing out the two-week event in October. Via Twitter, Cheadle is quick to point out it’s not exactly a biopic — more of an immersion into a few days in 1979 when Davis talks with a Rolling Stone reporter (Ewan McGregor).
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▪ “I Saw the Light,” the biopic of country crooner Hank “Your Cheatin’ Heart” Williams, just snagged a slot at September’s Toronto International Film Festival, often a springboard to awards season. Tom Hiddleston — Thor’s bratty brother — stars, along with Elizabeth Wilson and Bradley Whitford.
Finding her soul
Jennifer Hudson is getting some Hollywood R-E-S-P-E-C-T: She’s in talks to play Aretha Franklin in a movie about the soul singer’s rise to fame in the ’60s and ’70s and her relationship with her abusive ex-husband, Ted White, according to The Wrap. The long-gestating project is from “Straight Outta Compton” producer Scott Bernstein. Franklin, who has won 18 Grammys, wants her story told. In 2012, she told Glamour: “Let’s present the facts and be as creative as possible with them.”
Five months ago we felt the earth move under our feet over the announcement of the film version of Broadway hit “Beautiful: The Carole King Musical.” There’s still no word on who will direct or star. But the movie has plenty going for it: Tom Hanks’ company is producing, Sony Pictures is distributing and Douglas McGrath, who wrote the musical’s Tony-nominated book, is doing the screenplay.
| Sharon Hoffmann, email@example.com