Morgan Freeman will be slipping into Duke Ellington’s sharp suits to play the music legend in The Jazz Ambassadors.
The script covers the Ellington orchestra's tour of Iraq during a 1963 CIA-led coup that would eventually pave the way for Saddam Hussein's rise to power. Hmm… political! Jeremy Donner will pen the script, and Freeman’s taking a producer role.
New Line has snapped up the pitch script for Antoine “King Arthur” Fuqua to direct. He’d better hope his luck improves: since King Arthur opened to decidedly middling business, he’s had trouble locking down a film directing job. American Gangster, which he was planning to helm with his Training Day star Denzel Washington fell apart over budget. Under And Alone, a drama planned for Mel Gibson, went under when Mr Mel chose to grow a big straggly beard and instead concentrate on films about ancient peoples.
He hasn’t been sitting around, though – he’s directed several music videos and commercials to keep his hand in and has just completed a high-concept drama pilot, Kidnapped, for the US Fox network. Before he kicks off the Ellington film, he’ll direct By Any Means Necessary, about a cop pumping a jailed mobster for info on a terrorist attack…