James Brown’s biopic, Get On Up, is set for release on August 1st, and the first trailer has been released. The film is a “fearless look inside the music, moves and moods of Brown,” according to a synopsis, and is directed by The Help’s Tate Taylor and star’s Chadwick Boseman as the Godfather of Soul. Boseman could be an early Oscar contender if he proves capable of portraying the father of funk as convincingly as he did Jackie Robinson in 42.
But all signs point to an almost Jamie Foxx-like transformation a la Ray, as Boseman nails the gravely lows of Brown’s famous speaking voice, rocks his iconic looks and perfectly mimics the moves of the Hardest Working Man in Show Business. Get On Up chronicles Brown’s life from his early days in Augusta, Georgia, through living with his aunt at a brothel, his time spent in prison, the relationship with his estranged mother and his ascendancy to music royalty. But don’t expect every aspect of his life to be addressed, as Taylor says, “we're going to put it on shuffle instead of play." Still, dramatic and comedic scenes from the trailer prove King James’ life was destined for film.
Get On Up co-stars True Blood’s Nelsan Ellis as partner in crime Bobby Byrd, Craig Robinson as saxophonist Maceo Parker and Dan Aykroyd as manager Ben Bart. But press play and you’ll see such notables as Viola Davis, Octavia Spencer, Jill Scott and Aloe Blacc among the cast.