Cheadle fighting for modern Miles Davis film
A biographical film of Miles Davis has been something that Don Cheadle has been wanting to see made for some time, and now his wish could be a little close to reality. Steven Vegelman has just completed a screenplay for the proposed film and has been crediting Cheadle with a lot of the behind the scenes work.
Now they need to raise funds to get the film made, and they way they are looking at the film would mean that Davis' music could get he modern treatment with the current best producers getting involved and creating new versions of his work.
Don Cheadle and Steven Vegelman were at the fortieth anniversary of the Miles Davis landmark album Bitches Brew, and were talking about the project at length, and it's here that they revealed their hopes for the film which could well mean quite a few differences from the Miles Davis tracks that fans adore.
They revealed to The Hollywood Reporter through Reuters and Yahoo News that they have both been working hard on getting the screenplay to this point with Vegelman revealing that both he and Cheadle have been hard at work researching and pushing for this film.
Cheadle revealed a little of his plans for the film:
”We're trying to do what Miles Davis would have wanted us to do, which is approach it as artists with his life as the canvas...In being successful, some people say he sold out, but it's the opposite. You can stay in one place forever and try to make the same money from the same core fans, but saying to your audience, 'I'm going here now, come along or don't,' that's brave, risky and dangerous. That's what he did, and that's what we're trying to honor in this story -- that kind of spirit.”
Vegelman expanded on what Cheadle was hinting at:
”Don has this point of view about bringing in other hip-hop artists, to play with Miles Davis' music so the idea is for somebody to hear Jay-Z's version then turn to the original to learn more about Miles Davis..”
Cheadle ends with a very interesting comment:
”When Miles left this Earth (in 1991), he was already working with Prince, Snoop Dogg understands the music ... Miles always wanted to do what was happening now. If you said the word 'jazz' to him, he'd give you a smack -- social music, that's what it's called.”
So we could be seeing a film about Miles Davis but filled with modern producers interpreting his music in very different ways. I wonder how that would turn out for the film? Would we see it delivered in segments, the different tracks giving different feels to the sections of the film?
Well the screenplay is already written so you would expect the producers to come in and pick sections of the film to score with a Miles Davis track transformed with their own production style.
While part of me thinks that Miles Davis fans would be up in arms, another part of me is thinking that this project could turn out to be rather special, and bringing his music to the current generation through modern producers could have the desired effect of bringing more people to the originals of Miles Davis.
What do you think? Does the idea sound like it could spark off a new desire for Davis' back catalogue, or would it turn out to be a money earner for the current top producers? How would fans view it?