Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
James Franco Will Direct Film Based on Aziah "Zola" Wells' 148-Tweet Narrative That Went Viral James Franco Will Direct Film Based on Aziah "Zola" Wells' 148-Tweet Narrative That Went Viral Regarding 'Song of the South' – The Film That Disney Doesn’t Want You to See Regarding 'Song of the South' – The Film That Disney Doesn’t Want You to See Watch Mekhi Phifer in Trailer for "First-Person Shooter" Zombie Thriller, 'Pandemic' Watch Mekhi Phifer in Trailer for "First-Person Shooter" Zombie Thriller, 'Pandemic' HBO Sets April Premiere Date for 'Confirmation' HBO Sets April Premiere Date for 'Confirmation' Watch the Electrifying First Trailer for Don Cheadle's 'Miles Ahead' Watch the Electrifying First Trailer for Don Cheadle's 'Miles Ahead' Watch: Tyler Perry Previews 'The Passion' 2-Hour Musical Event in New Orleans Watch: Tyler Perry Previews 'The Passion' 2-Hour Musical Event in New Orleans Before Nate Parker's Nat Turner Film Is Released, Get Prepped By Watching Charles Burnett's 2003 Documentary Before Nate Parker's Nat Turner Film Is Released, Get Prepped By Watching Charles Burnett's 2003 Documentary Idris Elba Makes SAG Awards History + Viola Davis, Uzo Aduba, Queen Latifah Collect Trophies Idris Elba Makes SAG Awards History + Viola Davis, Uzo Aduba, Queen Latifah Collect Trophies Ryan Coogler to Deliver Prestigious University of Chicago Kent Lecture Feb. 9 Ryan Coogler to Deliver Prestigious University of Chicago Kent Lecture Feb. 9 First-Look at David Oyelowo and Rosamund Pike in Amma Asante's 'A United Kingdom' First-Look at David Oyelowo and Rosamund Pike in Amma Asante's 'A United Kingdom' Poster: Mike Epps, Paul Mooney, Charlie Murphy Comedy-Thriller 'Meet the Blacks' Poster: Mike Epps, Paul Mooney, Charlie Murphy Comedy-Thriller 'Meet the Blacks' Watch Episode 1 of PBS' New Civil War-Set Drama Series 'Mercy Street' + On-Set Visit Watch Episode 1 of PBS' New Civil War-Set Drama Series 'Mercy Street' + On-Set Visit Watch: OWN Previews New Primetime Series 'It's Not You, It's Men' (Tyrese Gibson & Rev Run Host) Watch: OWN Previews New Primetime Series 'It's Not You, It's Men' (Tyrese Gibson & Rev Run Host) First Look at Nate Parker's Nat Turner Film, 'The Birth of a Nation' First Look at Nate Parker's Nat Turner Film, 'The Birth of a Nation' TV One Aims to Change the Reality Genre with New Series, 'The Next 15' TV One Aims to Change the Reality Genre with New Series, 'The Next 15' Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton Is Heading to TV Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton Is Heading to TV Why Was Janet Hubert (Aunt Viv) Really Replaced on 'Fresh Prince of Bel-Air'? Why Was Janet Hubert (Aunt Viv) Really Replaced on 'Fresh Prince of Bel-Air'? 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... Denzel Washington Reveals Daughter Is In 'Django Unchained' + Roles He Regrets Rejecting Denzel Washington Reveals Daughter Is In 'Django Unchained' + Roles He Regrets Rejecting

Richard Pryor's Son Moves to Block Production of Lee Daniels' Biopic on the Legendary Comedian

Photo of Tambay A. Obenson By Tambay A. Obenson | Shadow and Act July 22, 2014 at 3:00PM

He also throws his support behind Nick Cannon starring in the film
2
Richard Pryor 2

As I noted in previous posts on the developing project, the film is being made with input from Richard Pryor's widow, Jennifer Lee Pryor, so I've always assumed that this wouldn't be one of those troubled, drama-filled biopic productions made without the approval/blessing of the subject's family.

It looks like I spoke too soon.

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.

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 about the project, nor about Cannon's casting.

And no word on whether Forest Whitaker is still involved in a producer capacity (he came on-board the project a year ago).

I'd be remiss if I didn't add that, 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: Richard Pryor


Shadow & ActNewsletter