Mike Epps Lands the Role of Richard Pryor in Lee Daniels-Directed Biopic

Comedian Mike Epps will bring Richard Pryor’s story to life on the big screen. 

Mike Epps onstage at the 2014 AOL NewFronts at Duggal Greenhouse on April 29, 2014, in New York City. 
Mike Epps onstage at the 2014 AOL NewFronts at Duggal Greenhouse on April 29, 2014, in New York City.  Brad Barket/Getty Images for AOL

Move over, Nick Cannon. Mike Epps has secured the role of Richard Pryor in a Lee Daniels-directed biopic about the late comedian. Oprah Winfrey announced the news on her Instagram account when she posted a photo of herself, Epps and Daniels, saying, “Just finished a great 1st read session. #RichardPryorMovie.”

Daniels then confirmed the casting news on his own Twitter account.

Back in July, rumors started circulating that Cannon was up for the coveted role, but I guess they were all for naught.

“Here’s the thing. There have been a lot of people out there who’ve discussed playing this role,” Cannon told TMZ. “I never want to jinx anything because you guys know how movies work. If it’s not in production, it’s not real. So all I’ll say is that I’m doing the work right now. I’m doing everything that I need to do to embody it when the opportunity is right.”

Other actors in the running for the role included Michael B. Jordan and Marlon Wayans. But it is Epps who had been vying for the role since 2005, when he was chosen to play the comic in a previous biopic that never saw the light of day.

After the announcement, Epps was congratulated by fellow comic Kevin Hart. Even though the two have had several Twitter feuds, Hart offered his version of an olive branch:

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