So we all know by now that Mike Epps landed the prized role of playing who many the consider the greatest comedian of all-time, Richard Pryor. This coming March, Epps is set to begin filming the upcoming Pryor biopic with Lee Daniels. The role has already created some Oscar buzz for Epps, in which he has have even went on social media to let fans know he has his eye on the award as he prepares to film the movie. Before Epps’s was confirmed to do the project other names that were being considered were Marlon Wayans and Nick Cannon but according to Richard Pryor’s widow they weren’t raw enough. In an interview with Madame Noire, Jennifer Pryor explained why Epps beat everyone else for the role.
I think Mike has a rawness about him that is very similar to Richard’s rawness. You know what I mean? Nick is a delightful person, I think he’s a very nice guy and I think the same of Marlon, but I don’t feel their rawness. That’s not an insult, it’s just a fact. Some people look kind of shattered when they walk into a room and Mike’s got that vulnerability and you can identify that. Marlon doesn’t have that, nor does Nick. They’re both very talented and their both very likable, they’re both great guys and they’ll obviously be in the business for a very long time, but…it’s just different. When you’re going to play Richard, who’s a very raw person, you have to be able to embody that and identify with that, and Mike can do both.
According to Jennifer the script is currently being written by Daniels as they prepare to film in NYC this March.