Now here's a lesson in studio cooperation: DreamWorks and Warner Bros. have teamed up to co-produce the first major biopic of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr.

One studio had the approval of the estate and the other years of research, so they've decided to join forces.

Kario Salem, best known for writing the Robert De Niro bank heist flick 'The Score,' is in negotiations for the film, which is still untitled. Salem had reportedly invested three-and-a-half years worth of research in the screenplay he wrote for Warners. Because of the joint effort, he'll now start from scratch with a new script.

DreamWorks, meanwhile secured the cooperation of the King estate in 2009 and access to King's intellectual property including his famous "I Have a Dream" speech. Their collaboration reduces the number of MLK projects by just one: There are still other rival biopics in the works. 'Precious' director Lee Daniels has been trying to secure funding for his project, which would focus on the Selma, Alabama marches. (Much as the 2001 HBO movie 'Boycott,' did for the Montgomery bus boycott.) He's chosen David Oyelowo (Dr. Junju in 'The Last King of Scotland' and agent Danny Hunter on British series 'MI:5') as his King.

Universal just backed out of 'Memphis,' a look at King's final days, leaving Paul Greengrass to seek separate funding.

Jeffrey Wright won an AFI Award for his portrayal of King in 'Boycott.' Who would you cast as Dr. King?

[via The Hollywood Reporter]
categories Movies