Yasiin Bey Cast as Jazz Icon Thelonious Monk in Upcoming Biopic

Jupiter Rising Film co-founders Alberto Marzan and Peter Lord Moreland announced Wednesday that Bey has signed on to play the lead role. According to a press release, the film “will center around [Monk’s] struggles for musical success, mental illness and the spiritual love triangle between his wife Nellie and one of the world’s richest women, Nica Rothschild.”

Speaking to Rolling Stone about the film, Moreland explained his thought process behind casting Bey: “Yasiin lives his life with a vibe not easily found in Hollywood, because he’s not Hollywood, point blank. His values and moral compass are intentional and focused on what really matters. Everyone who knows his body of work has seen him boldly transform himself from his music to the Broadway stage, the silver screen and beyond. When he looked at me and said, ‘I am Thelonious,’ I knew we had found him.”

Thelonious will mark Bey’s first appearance on the big screen (as a character other than himself) since 2009’s Next Day Air. After acting in Spike Lee’s 2000 film Bamboozled, Bey went on to star in several movies, including Monster’s Ball (2001), Brown Sugar (2002), The Italian Job (2003), and The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (2005). Prior to portraying Chuck Berry in 2008’s Cadillac Records, Bey also scored Golden Globe nominations for his work in the 2004 movie Something the Lord Made.

source: complex.com BYBRAD CALLAS

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