Soul Food and Men of Honor director George Tillman Jr., who captured Notorious B.I.G.’s life story in the 2009 biopic Notorious, will take a swing at another musical icon when he tackles Miles Davis in a planned biopic. Tentatively titled Miles, the film is being developed by the late trumpeter’s son, Gregory, The Hollywood Reporter says.
The project is loosely based on the book “Dark Magus: The Jekyll and Hyde Life of Miles Davis”, written by Gregory Davis. Isaac Fergusson wrote the original draft of the screenplay, but the filmmakers are further developing the script.
I discussed this project back in 2008, when Nick Davis Raynes optioned the rights to “Dark Magus: The Jekyll and Hyde Life of Miles Davis.”
This is not the Miles Davis-estate backed project, which has Don Cheadle attached to star as the iconic jazz trumpeter.
Certainly there’s nothing wrong with two, competing Miles Davis films, but it definitely makes things interesting in terms of how fans will respond. What we have is one project (w/ Tillman) likely constructed as a more traditional biopic, whereas Cheadle’s endeavor is built on a more unique narrative that tells a story over the course of one day.
No word yet if Tillman and Raynes have an actor in mind to play Davis, but certainly there has been plenty of buzz for years about a respected and talented actor such as Don Cheadle playing the mega-role in his telling of the Miles Davis story. No doubt it will be key for Tillam to cast wisely when finding someone to play such a major, real-life figure. They could go the unknown route, or perhaps there is an actor already established who might want to take on the challenge.
It will be interesting to see how this news effects the Cheadle/Miles Davis Estate project, which up until now has leaked a few details via Cheadle about script content, but also has admitted to financial roadblocks in getting the film up and running.
I did just post an item about Antoine Fuqua being attached as the director for the Cheadle film, but there’s been no verification as far as I have seen.