Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Here's Idris Elba's Response to Commentary That He's "Too Street" to Play James Bond Here's Idris Elba's Response to Commentary That He's "Too Street" to Play James Bond Carl Franklin Is Casting an Actor for His Tupac Bio (No Marcc Rose from 'Straight Outta Compton'?) Carl Franklin Is Casting an Actor for His Tupac Bio (No Marcc Rose from 'Straight Outta Compton'?) 'Dope' Is Heading Back to Theaters for a Second Run (Awards Season Contention, Perhaps?) 'Dope' Is Heading Back to Theaters for a Second Run (Awards Season Contention, Perhaps?) BET Launches Original Series “THE BET LIFE OF…” - Will Look at Musical Careers of Beyonce, Chris Brown, Janet Jackson, Nicki Minaj & Trey Songz BET Launches Original Series “THE BET LIFE OF…” - Will Look at Musical Careers of Beyonce, Chris Brown, Janet Jackson, Nicki Minaj & Trey Songz Trailer for Season 2 of 'Z Nation' (Kellita Smith Is Fierce on the Show!) Trailer for Season 2 of 'Z Nation' (Kellita Smith Is Fierce on the Show!) Will Smith Puts on His "Nigerian Accent" in First Trailer for NFL Drama 'Concussion' Will Smith Puts on His "Nigerian Accent" in First Trailer for NFL Drama 'Concussion' This "Faith-Based" Drama Is Giving 'Straight Outta Compton' a Run for Its Money This Weekend... This "Faith-Based" Drama Is Giving 'Straight Outta Compton' a Run for Its Money This Weekend... BET and TV One Will Go Head-to-Head Tonight With Original Movies Airing at the Exact Same Time BET and TV One Will Go Head-to-Head Tonight With Original Movies Airing at the Exact Same Time Lee Daniels' Richard Pryor Biopic Is Officially Ready to Go (Mike Epps, Eddie Murphy, Oprah Winfrey, Kate Hudson) Lee Daniels' Richard Pryor Biopic Is Officially Ready to Go (Mike Epps, Eddie Murphy, Oprah Winfrey, Kate Hudson) At Least 2 More Superhero Movies Are in Viola Davis' Future... At Least 2 More Superhero Movies Are in Viola Davis' Future... Watch 5 Clips from Regina King's Feature Directorial Debut 'Let The Church Say Amen' Starring Naturi Naughton Watch 5 Clips from Regina King's Feature Directorial Debut 'Let The Church Say Amen' Starring Naturi Naughton Righting a Past Wrong? Academy to Present Spike Lee with Honorary Oscar Righting a Past Wrong? Academy to Present Spike Lee with Honorary Oscar African-American Female Team Produce Indie Horror Film ‘The Dark Rite’ African-American Female Team Produce Indie Horror Film ‘The Dark Rite’ Viola Davis Says She Will Star in a Film Adaptation of 'Fences' Directed by Denzel Washington Viola Davis Says She Will Star in a Film Adaptation of 'Fences' Directed by Denzel Washington "This Is a Relationship" - Watch Michael Ealy Frighten Sanaa Lathan in Tense First Clip From 'The Perfect Guy' "This Is a Relationship" - Watch Michael Ealy Frighten Sanaa Lathan in Tense First Clip From 'The Perfect Guy' Vin Diesel Says He's Returning for a 'xXx' Threequel - Filming to Start in December Vin Diesel Says He's Returning for a 'xXx' Threequel - Filming to Start in December Updates on Steve McQueen's "Epic" Series Centered on a Black Community in London, Over 3 Decades Updates on Steve McQueen's "Epic" Series Centered on a Black Community in London, Over 3 Decades Why Was Janet Hubert (Aunt Viv) Really Replaced on 'Fresh Prince of Bel-Air'? Buzzfeed Investigates Why Was Janet Hubert (Aunt Viv) Really Replaced on 'Fresh Prince of Bel-Air'? Buzzfeed Investigates Netflix Explains Why It Doesn't Always Have That Film Or TV Show You Really Want To See (Video) Netflix Explains Why It Doesn't Always Have That Film Or TV Show You Really Want To See (Video) Tichina Arnold Says She Talked To Martin Lawrence About Doing A 'Martin' Movie... Tichina Arnold Says She Talked To Martin Lawrence About Doing A 'Martin' Movie...

Mike Epps is Reportedly Now Frontfunner to Play Richard Pryor in Lee Daniels' Biopic

Photo of Tambay A. Obenson By Tambay A. Obenson | Shadow and Act August 11, 2014 at 3:42PM

I should note that Mike Epps actually plays Richard Pryor in Cynthia Mort's Nina Simone film that Zoe Saldana stars in.
0
Richard Pryor 2

In news that has become all-too common when it comes to films based on the lives of real-life public figures, Richard Pryor's son has threatened legal action in a move to block production on Lee Daniels' in-development film about the legendary comic.

Lawyers representing Richard Pryor, Jr. have reportedly sent a cease and desist letter to the Pryor's (the father's) widow, Jennifer Lee Pryor, who is involved in the making of the film. The letter, obtained by TMZ, insists that all work on the project stop, accusing Jennifer Lee (his stepmother) of using "illegal, fraudulent" activity to obtain the rights to her husband's (his father's) name. Pryor Jr. is also reportedly threatening to take legal action, if the biopic does moves forward.

No comment yet from Jennifer Lee nor Lee Daniels in response to the son's statements.

Mike Epps

Earlier this month, Nick Cannon all-but confirmed in a video interview with TMZ, that he will play Richard Pryor Lee Daniels' film. 

Cannon initially stirred up rumors of his involvement, via his Instagram page a few weeks ago, and was asked about those rumors during an appearance on TMZ Live.

Thus far, Daniels has not spoken publicly about the project, nor about Cannon's casting. But Deadline is reporting that Mike Epps is actually the front-runner for the job, after he reportedly blew Daniels and producers The Weinstein Company away with his audition.

Cannon is still in contention, as are Michael B. Jordan and Marlon Wayans (who was attached to star in the project before it changed hands).

Also, Kate Hudson and Anne Hathaway are said to both be in the running to play Jennifer Lee Pryor in the film.

I should note that Mike Epps actually plays Richard Pryor in Cynthia Mort's Nina Simone film that Zoe Saldana stars in.

Last year saw the release of what was dubbed the definitive documentary on Pryor's life, directed by Marina Zenovich (known mostly for directing the multiple award-winning 2008 documentary "Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired").

Jennifer Lee Pryor was also producer of the doc, giving director Marina Zenovich access to estate photos and other materials, as many of Pryor's friends and family opened up for the project, which focused on Pryor's transformation from successful but mild stand-up comedian, to successful but dangerous social critic. 

Titled "Richard Pryor: Omit the Logic," the doc was broadcast on Showtime last fall, as part of a new documentary series showcase titled "Closeup," which gives measured and complex looks at the lives of several notable public figures, with Richard Pryor being among the first to be "provocatively studied," as Showtime described it.

In the video below, watch Pryor's son talk to TMZ about the film, including his casting preference.

Richard Pryor Jr. -- If I Can't Play My Dad ... Nick Cannon Should - Watch More Celebrity Videos or Subscribe

This article is related to: Mike Epps


Shadow & ActNewsletter