When it comes to the Bob Marley biopic, we really don’t need to worry ‘bout a thing. Sorry, we couldn’t resist.
Deadline reports, after a long search, Paramount has cast Kingsley Ben-Adir to play the legend in its upcoming film.
Ben-Adir won the role after a long audition process, where execs saw dozens of actors. It’s understandable that this would be such a coveted role. In recent years, Jamie Foxx and Rami Malek have both won Oscars for their portrayals of music legends.
Jennifer Hudson also received several high profile awards for her performance as Aretha Franklin in Respect.
As evidenced by his critically acclaimed performance as Malcolm X in One Night in Miami, Ben-Adir is no stranger to playing icons. He also appeared as President Barack Obama in Showtime’s The Comey Rule.
The film will reportedly be directed by King Richard’s Reinaldo Marcus Green and produced by Ziggy Marley, Rita Marley and Cedella Marley for Tuff Gong.
At 25 million copies around the world, Marley’s Legend is the best selling reggae album of all-time, with new generations discovering his music every day.
Based on his previous performances, Ben-Adir is a great choice. He makes authentic, non-showy choices that allow him to blend into the character, and not chew the scenery.
Considering how huge Marley’s legacy and impact are, we hope the studio takes the same extra effort with every decision they make for the film. This project is more important than they probably understand.
Biopics either go one of two ways. There’s the sunshines and rainbows, “I was a perfect inspiration the whole time” version, which is boring and unbelievable. Then there’s the warts and all, Ray style movie, and that’s the much more interesting option.
As for Ben-Adir, he is set to co-star in the upcoming Disney+ Marvel series Secret Invasion. The show features Samuel L. Jackson’s Nick Fury fighting a skrull invasion, and Ben-Adir will reportedly play the villain.