This is the best casting news I’ve heard in a very long time. Earlier this year, there were rumors that Eddie Murphy had been cast as the groundbreaking comedian/actor Richard Pryor in a developing biopic. Sure, Murphy is one of the many comedians who took after Pryor’s edgy style and benefited from his trailblazing routines, but I wasn’t a fan of his casting. That’s why the news of his replacement has come as a welcomed surprise. According to Hitflix, Murphy’s out and Marlon Wayans is in as the star of the film.
Bill Condon is the director behind the Pryor film, so you’d assume Eddie had an automatic in due to their previous working relationship from Dreamgirls. It turns out that Wayans auditioned for Condon and several producers and he knocked it out of the park. He used two dramatic scenes directly from the film, and earned his spot as the front-runner for the lead role. With Murphy on the outs, the potential backing of Paramount and Fox Searchlight went with it, so oddly enough Adam Sandler’s Happy Madison via Sony has stepped in to produce the film.
I can see Wayans starring as Pryor a lot easier than Murphy, so this news is a relief. The actor is no stranger to drama, for some odd reason people continue to forget his heartbreaking performance in Darren Aronofsky‘s Requiem for a Dream. He rocked that role, and he’ll do the same with this one. Way to go, Marlon!
What do you think about Marlon Wayans being cast as Richard Pryor?