Bob Marley Family Blocking Biopic Rights
Fri, 21 Mar 2008 15:33:57
The family of Bob Marley has refused to license any of the reggae star's songs to an upcoming Weinstein Co. film about him, one that just so happens to be executive produced by his widow, Rita Marley. The reason is simple: They're focusing on the push of Martin Scorsese's documentary, which is due out in February of 2010 to coincide with Marley's birthday.
"All our efforts and support are currently directed toward the documentary," the reggae legend's son, Ziggy Marley, told the Hollywood Reporter. (He's an executive producer of the as-yet-untitled Scorsese film.) "We believe that this project is the best way to represent our father's life from his perspective, and any other film project pertaining to our father will be empty without his music to support it."
"Martin Scorsese doesn't want to go out with a competing project, and [Scorsese producer] Steven Bing has made deals with companies that are now compromised," added Chris Blackwell, the president of Blue Mountain Music. "The Weinstein project has put the documentary into jeopardy."
Blackwell said he'd like to see the Weinstein film delayed until at least 2015 (it's projected for a late 2009 release right now), but nothing has been resolved with Harvey Weinstein thus far. According to the Reporter, a deal may be struck wherein the Weinstein's buy a piece of Scorsese's doc and postpone their biopic.
As Weinstein Co. spokesman Matthew Frankel put it, "We have great respect for the Marley family and Chris Blackwell and are in discussions to look at ways to mutually benefit both projects."
—The ARTISTdirect Staff