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Notorious helmer George Tillman Jr. will direct a Miles Davis biopic

11.10.2011

Here's a terrible idea!

THR's Risky Business blog is reporting that George Tillman Jr. - director of the terribly generic Biggie Smalls biopic NOTORIOUS and the middle-of-the-road Dwayne Johnson actioner FASTER - has been hired to develop and direct MILES, a biopic on one of jazz's most influential badasses, Miles Davis.

Screenwriting newcomer Isaac Fergusson wrote the project's original draft (though the filmmakers are currently "revising" it) which is loosely based on Dark Magus: The Jekyll and Hyde Life of Miles Davis by Miles' son Gregory Davis who somewhat reassuringly will be consulting on the film itself.

Not so reassuring, however, are comments made by producer Nick Davis Raynes (CARLITO'S WAY: RISE TO POWER), who basically admits that MILES will follow the same tired boilerplate template we've been getting in our biopics for years: "Our intention is to make a feature film that will appeal beyond the worldwide audience of Miles Davis die-hard fans, to also include those who don't know the first thing about the man, and introduce new ears to his music. In much the same way that Walk The Line and Ray were able to open the world's eyes to the life stories of Johnny Cash and Ray Charles, respectively, we want to make a film that will do the same justice for Miles Davis. Miles, in his fifty-year career as a musician, transcends time, space and race."

Who will play Davis is currently unknown, though actor Don Cheadle has in the past shown great interest in not only portraying the legendary musician, but in producing and directing his own version of a biopic. It was even set up at Overture Films for awhile (one that was said to focus on only a brief period in the man's life) though it unfortunately never gained traction. Would Cheadle be up for slumming it with Tillman just to have a chance to play the famed trumpeter?

Extra Tidbit: "Spanish Key", one of my favorite tracks from Davis's incredible Bitches Brew, was featured in the jazz club scene of Michael Mann's 2004 film COLLATERAL.

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