Tracy Morgan is in negotiations to play Redd Foxx in the Richard Pryor biopic that is set to be directed by Lee Daniels.
“Mr. Foxx, I hope I do you justice!” said Morgan in a statement to The Wrap, who first reported on his casting. “It will be an honor to portray an icon.”
Assuming negotiations lead to a deal, Morgan will join a growing cast that includes, Taraji P. Henson playing Richard Pryor’s mother; Eddie Murphy as Pryor’s father; Oprah Winfrey as Pryor’s grandmother; Kate Hudson as Jennifer Lee Pryor, Richard Pryor’s 4th wife; and, of course, Mike Epps in the starring role, as Richard Pryor.
Production is set to begin next March, as soon as Daniels wraps up the ongoing second season of his hit Fox series “Empire.” So I wouldn’t expect the completed film until some time in 2017; although, with a March principal photography start date, a late 2016 opening could be in the cards, as The Weinstein Co. makes an award season run with the film, so that it qualifies for consideration.
I should note that Mike Epps actually plays Richard Pryor in Cynthia Mort’s still-unreleased Nina Simone film that Zoe Saldana stars in. It was set to hit theaters next month, but it doesn’t appear that will happen.