“This is the kind of movie the business 10 years ago may have leapt at. But now, you don’t really see movies like this. We have a studio offer and we’re trying to back into a budget number, like we always have to do, without gutting the piece.” That’s Don Cheadle telling The Wall Street Journal that the Miles Davis movie he wants to star in and direct is on the edge of coming close to nearing the zone of being a possible studio project.
The actor, who also plays trumpet, explained that the film itself wasn’t a pure biopic, but “a gangster pic. It’s a movie that Miles Davis would have wanted to star in. Without throwing history away, we’re trying to shuffle it and make it more cubist. The bulk of it takes place in ’79, in a period where he actually wasn’t playing. But we traverse a lot of it his life, but it’s not a cradle to grave story.”
Cubist? Picasso would be proud. So would later-life Miles Davis. This is the kind of comment that leaves heads being scratched, and that may be the best kind of real start for a picture about the man who gave birth to The Cool and whipped up a mean Bitches Brew. Cheadle also responded to the announcement of another Miles Davis biopic being directed by George Tillman, Jr. (Notorious, Faster) saying, essentially, the more the merrier. He remarked that he had rights to all the music he’d need for his production, and that there should be as many movies about the great Davis as possible.
This can’t come soon enough.