Long-awaited Marvin Gaye biopic slated to begin production

Lenny Kravitz has been replaced by Law & Order veteran Jesse L. Martin for the lead role.

As Deadline reports (via Consequence of Sound), the long-gestating project, entitled Sexual Healing, is finally set to begin production, with filming to start later this month in Europe.

Law & Order‘s Jesse L. Martin will play Marvin Gaye in the revived production. Martin had been attached to the project five years ago, when it was being produced by James Gandolfini, and he bears a pretty close resemblance to the fallen soul singer.

Sexual Healing focuses on Gaye’s time in Europe during the early 1980s as he dealt with addiction and worked with British promoter Freddy Cousaert to get his career back on track; Brendan Fraser will portray Cousaert.

The film is being directed by Julien Temple, a music video and documentary director who has worked on projects with and about David Bowie, Joe Strummer, and Whitney Houston, among others.

Last year, rocker Lenny Kravitz had been tapped for the lead, before dropping out due to objections from Gaye’s son, Marvin Gaye III. The younger Gaye had threatened legal action over the film, due to it’s focus on a low point in his father’s life.



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