Don Cheadle (Miles Ahead/Miles Davis)
Brian Douglas

Don Cheadle is set to make his directorial debut with "Miles Ahead," a biopic about jazz legend Miles Davis, who the actor has apparently been obsessed with from a young age.  

Cheadle's film focuses on Davis's so-called "silent period," a five-year span he took off from music before returning to his art, as well as the musician's rocky relationship with Frances Taylor Davis, his first wife.  

After languishing in the development whirlpool for almost a decade, the project is set to begin shooting this week in Cincinnati.  Ewan McGregor, Michael Stuhlbarg and Emayatzy Corinealdi co-star alongside Cheadle as Davis.  

Remarkably, Cheadle is making his film without any studio backing--he had a bite from HBO at one point but that fell through, and the actor/director turned to Indiegogo instead to raise $325,000.  With a little less than two days to go, the project has so far raised about $265,000.

EW sat down with Cheadle for an interview about the biopic and the process of making a completely independent film--you can read some highlights from their exchange after the jump.