Mike Epps to play Richard Pryor, distract from Zoe Saldana playing Nina Simone
With the outcry over the casting of Zoe Saldana as Nina Simone showing no signs of abating or being less uncomfortable to write about, Cynthia Mort's biopic has found at least one way to be distracting: Cast comedian and actor Mike Epps as Richard Pryor and spread the "how dare they think they can play _______" wealth around. Epps will play a young, nervous Pryor in the 1960s, back when he suffered from horrible stage fright while opening for Simone, with Simone regularly comforting him by rocking him like a baby until he regained his confidence. This was in the early days, of course, before freebasing cocaine was invented. Thank you, cocaine!