"Fast and Furious" star Tyrese Gibson has just signed to play R&B legend Teddy Pendergrass in an upcoming Warner Bros. biopic.
Gibson, who is who is a multi-Grammy nominated singer, met with the late Pendergrass before he passed away in 2010.
"I am honored to take this journey. This is the role that I feel I was born to play,” Gibson said in a statement. "Teddy Pendergrass embraced me and before he passed, put the responsibility on my shoulders to tell his story." He says that the project is "an answered prayer... Teddy, I just hope we make you, your wife and family proud… Here we go."
Teddy Pendergrass' widow, Joan Pendergrass, is an executive producer, as is "The Butler" director Lee Daniels.
Pendergrass rose to fame in the early 70s as the lead singer of Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes. As a solo artist, he had four consecutive platinum albums between 1977 and 1981, which was a record for an African-American R&B artist.
In 1982, Pendergrass was paralyzed from the chest down after a devastating car accident. After the accident, Pendergrass was initially suicidal but learned how to sing again, making a historical comeback at the Live Aid Concert at Wembley Stadium in London in 1985. (That's the same charity concert that's the highlight of Queen biopic "Bohemian Rhapsody.")
He continued his successful solo career until announcing his retirement in 2007, when he established the Teddy Pendergrass Alliance to help those with spinal cord injuries.
Playing a music legend is usually awards catnip: Rami Malek just won a Best Actor Oscar as Freddie Mercury, as did Jamie Foxx for playing Ray Charles.
Joaquin Phoenix was nominated for Best Actor for his performance as Johnny Cash in "Walk the Line," and Angela Bassett and Laurence Fishburne were both nominated for playing Tina Turner and Ike Turner in "What's Love Got To Do With It."
[Via The Wrap]