Jesse L. Martin's Decade-Long Quest To Play Marvin Gaye May Be At An End!
In February of 2008, I wrote a news item for C.H.U.D. about Lauren Goodman's Marvin Gaye biopic, SEXUAL HEALING, being on the verge of principal photography, thanks in part to James Gandolfini coming onboard to produce and play British music promoter Freddy Cousaert. At the center of this film was Jesse L. Martin, who originated the role of Tom Collins in the New York Theatre Workshop/Broadway production of RENT before going on to star in a zillion LAW & ORDER episodes as Detective Ed Green. Martin had been ferociously pursuing the role of Marvin Gaye for years. It was his dream part. But while most people believed Martin was ideal casting, it was difficult convincing financiers to invest in a music biopic starring a guy best known for busting perps on television. So the project basically fell apart, dashing Martin's dreams.
Last year, SEXUAL HEALING almost went into production with Julien Temple directing and Lenny Kravitz in the lead. No one save for the money people liked this casting, but Martin hadn't gotten any more popular in the interim, so this seemed like the best shot to get the film made. Thankfully, Gaye's son, Marvin Gaye III, pitched a fit, which evidently helped get Kravitz off the project. And now, five years later, we're back to Jesse L. Martin.
I'm still not a huge fan of a Gaye biopic focusing almost exclusively on his brief career resurgence in the early 1980s (cut short by Marvin's father, who shot and killed his own son), but I'm rooting for the very talented Martin to do do something extraordinary with this performance. Gaye's life followed an erratic trajectory: exhilarating highs, unfathomable lows and very little in between. Here's hoping they don't dwell on the misery. (And that they can get the rights to at least some of Gaye's Motown recordings from Barry Gordy, who is reportedly holding out to produce a Gaye biopic of his own.) There's a great story to be told here.
Readers Talkbackcomments powered by Disqus
- Harry dives into STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS' spoilers to reveal the truth behind the blockbuster we're seeing! -- 245 total posts 115 posts
HERCULES ON THE RADIO!!
Learn What Ain’t It Cool’s TV Critic Thinks About STAR TREK: INTO DARKNESS, Next Week’s HANNIBAL, MAD MEN, GAME OF THRONES, The New Fall Shows And More!! Listen And Call In LIVE Saturday 8pm PT/11pm ET!! -- 236 total posts 110 posts
- Hey! Fat Face! Here's The New Teaser To ANCHORMAN: THE LEGEND CONTINUES! -- 221 total posts 59 posts
- Nordling Reviews STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS! Spoilers Abound! You Are Warned! -- 1023 total posts 57 posts
- UPDATE The Friday Docback Calls 'The Name of the Doctor'!! DOCTOR WHO's S7 Finale Arrives This Weekend!! Now With Glen's Ultra-Brief, SPOILER FREE MiniReview!! -- 309 total posts 51 posts
- Here's A Behind-The-Scenes Look At MAN OF STEEL With New Footage! Also... Is Supergirl In The Prequel Comic? -- 121 total posts 38 posts
‘Darkness Will Devour Them All!!’
Sunday Brings Antepenultimate GAME OF THRONES For HBO!! -- 23 total posts 23 posts
- 1st Trailer for Jean Pierre Jeunet's THE YOUNG AND PRODIGIOUS SPIVET!!! Joy Follows... -- 30 total posts 13 posts
- New PACIFIC RIM Trailer Takes A Battleship Upside The Head Of Every Other Summer Movie Trailer! -- 285 total posts 13 posts
- Capone reviews STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS and considers the art of messing with canon and why it doesn't bother him!!! -- 513 total posts 13 posts