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Mick Jagger, Brian Grazer behind James Brown biopic

Brown in 2005. Photo: AP

Brown in 2005. Photo: AP

A James Brown biopic is finally happening sometime…soon.

With none other than super producer Brian Grazer (“Apollo 13,” “8 Mile,” “Parenthood,” “Friday Night Lights”) and Mick Jagger at the helm, the project, which has been in limbo since the late ‘90s, is set to begin casting…soon.

In a new interview in Rolling Stone, Deana Brown-Thomas, one of Brown’s seven children, says her father was “intrigued but wary” of a movie based on his life, since it would inevitably spotlight the unsavory moments.  But after years of legal wrangling over Brown’s property and finances after his death in 2006, an agreement to proceed with the project has been reached.

Some excerpts from Grazer in the Q&A:

  • “Mick had a relationship with James Brown and studied him as an artist. He has strong opinions, but he’s gentle. He’s not like, “I don’t like it.” He would just say, “Let’s rethink it…” (on what Mick Jagger brings to the table.)
  • “I loved him. I think he liked me.” (on periodically meeting with Brown before his death.)
  • “I like to make movies about mastery and genius, and it’s hard to find great subjects. And James Brown is a visually dynamic subject.”

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By Melissa Ruggieri, The Music Scene

    9 comments Add your comment

    Rick James

    January 18th, 2013
    3:13 pm

    I’m so glad this is coming.Mr Brown was a musical genuis.Hopefully we’ll also soon find out where he was finally laid to rest.


    January 18th, 2013
    6:54 pm

    Before they do anything they should consult with me. The first concert I ever saw was James Brown in Dothan the Farm Center I was 12 years old wow!! I was hooked man. I am 56 now and I still listen to his music and dance to it. I know Mr. Brown inside and out. I know when he is serious, when he is up set, and when he is really happy. I know every expresion the clothes he likes to wear and the type of dancers he uses. I have always wondered why some young kid that can really dance and sing a little, and really loves his music has not imitated him he would make a fortune. I love Mick Jager as well wow. I know that in Micks younger days he danced like Mr. Brown and he was great at it no one remembers that but I do.If you want this film to be authentic get in touch with me.You don’t see James Brown you feel him. This is not a gag or a joke I am as serious as a heart attack something Mr. Brown would say ask his kids.Don’t make this movie with out me.I know where he was born in Georgia,where he went to jail and what he did to make a living before he started singing.But what I will bring to this movie that no one else can is a love for the man.


    January 18th, 2013
    9:06 pm

    James, Michael the greatest ever, today singers have no passion and soul the way James did it, the Chris Browns and Neo and the rest of these guys are a joke, today artist are the worse of any generation of soul music history.

    James and the Sam Cooke of the day did not need American Idol they earned it the hard way, these water down pop sounded r&b artist today sing from the head not their hard.

    The Georgia Music Channel

    January 18th, 2013
    9:24 pm

    One of Georgia’s many great music artists. This further preserves the history of Georgia music and would be an awesome project. We’re all for preserving the history of Georgia music and the artists –


    January 19th, 2013
    12:54 am

    I hope they look at Joshua Ledet (contestant on Season 11 of American Idol) to have a role in this movie. He received standing ovation during his 45 day tour last year (2012) Catch his performance on youtube…..u will be blown away.

    Mr Bill

    January 19th, 2013
    4:23 am

    THE GODFATHER OF SOUL, The Hardest Working Man in Show Business. No one else comes close.

    charles mcmullen

    January 19th, 2013
    6:05 am

    me and my boys did THE JAMES BROWN back 66, 67 on television in COLUMBUS, GA on satuday mourning,, some seems to like it, we were from THOMASTON,GA.


    January 19th, 2013
    3:52 pm

    Esteemed writer and Rolling Stones biographer (Dance with the Devil) Stanley Booth (Brunswick) should be integrally involved with this movie if he isn’t. Nobody knows the Rolling Stones like Stanley and he has also worked on pieces about James Brown too. Can’t be a great movie with Stanley’s input.

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