Focus Features International will sell worldwide rights to the untitled biopic that Julien Temple will direct with Rent and Law & Order‘s Jesse L. Martin starring as the iconic soul singer with the sweet voice and troubled personal life. Script is by Matthew Broughton, and In Bruges‘ Brendan Gleeson will play the role of Freddy Cousaert, who met Marvin Gaye in 1981 in the Belgian fishing village of Ostend when the singer was battling everything from drug problems to the IRS. Cousaert helped the singer regain his mojo, leading to a comeback that included hits like Sexual Healing. Vicky Krieps (Hanna) also stars and Dwight Henry (the bakery owner who played Hushpuppy’s father in Beasts Of The Southern Wild) will play Gaye’s father, who silenced his son with a gunshot.
From The Hunger Games to “Heard It Through The Grapevine” — Lenny Kravitz is set to play Marvin Gaye, Deadline has confirmed. The part of the Motown legend in the Julien Temple-helmed film will be the first lead role for the Grammy-winning Kravitz as an actor, after he has appeared in supporting roles in Lee Daniels’ Precious as well as The Hunger Games. (He also will be seen in Daniels’ White House drama The Butler and in the upcoming sequel The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.) The Gaye project is scheduled to start filming next year and will focus on the time Gaye spent in Europe in the early 1980s, when the soul singer attempted to get his addictions under control and career back on track with the help of British music promoter Freddy Cousaert. Gaye was shot by his father and died in Los Angeles on April 1, 1984. Temple, a video and documentary director, helmed Absolute Beginners and, more recently, the 2012 Summer Olympics docu London: Modern Babylon.