Updated With Correction!! Forest Whitaker Is Resurrecting The Richard Pryor Biopic!!
The Kidd here...
A Richard Pryor biopic has been in development for a long time, 20 years in fact. Plenty of names have come and gone on the project with everyone from Scorsese to Kasi Lemmons to Bill Condon directing, and names like Eddie Murphy, Chris Rock, Marlon Wayans, Damon Wayans, Eddie Griffin and Mike Epps in the conversation to play the legendary comedian. The Condon-Marlon Wayans pairing was the most recent to give it a go before Condon's commitments to THE TWILIGHT SAGA: BREAKING DAWN films derailed that.
[Correction: The film was very much alive with Marlon Wayans as Richard Pryor pre-Condon's involvement in TWILIGHT under the Happy Madison shingle at Sony, but an unresolvable dispute between producer Chris Rock and Jennifer Pryor stemming from a Michael Vick-pitbull joke that Rock dropped on THE TONIGHT SHOW that offended Pryor's animal rescue sensibilities ultimately collapsed the project. Condon would eventually move on to do something else, which would wind up being TWILIGHT, and the film sat in limbo, nearly getting off the ground one more time with Condon directing from his script, but it just wasn't to be.]
However, it appears a new face has once again picked up the torch to try getting a Pryor film made. According to Deadline, it's Forest Whitaker's time to run with the project, as he is partnering up with Jennifer Pryor, Richard's widow, to try resurrecting a proposed film once again. Whitaker and Pryor will produce, alongside Significant Productions’ Nina Yang-Bongiovi, with Forest attempting to get a new script going.
Many others have tried before and failed, so we'll see if Whitaker can get this any higher off the ground than his predecessors. One thing is for sure... the names that used to be in line to play Pryor aren't going to work anymore due to age, so they're going to have to find someone else to fill those big shoes.
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