Bob Marley cast in new biopic after year-long global search

21 February 2022, 11:27 | Updated: 21 February 2022, 12:06

By Mayer Nissim

British actor Kingsley Ben-Adir is lined up to play the reggae icon in a new movie.

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Hollywood has had massive success with biopics of music icons in recent years, with the Elton John picture Rocketman and Queen film Bohemian Rhapsody attracting rave reviews and massive audiences.

An Elvis movie from Baz Luhrmann is also on the way, as well as a Bee Gees biopic – and now the role of Bob Marley has reportedly been cast in an upcoming film.

After a year-long global search, Paramount has picked British actor Kingsley Ben-Adir to play the reggae legend, Deadline reports.

Kingsley attracted plenty of attention playing Malcolm X in Regina King's 2020 film One Night in Miami, a fictionalised retelling of the real-life meeting of Malcolm X, Muhammad Ali, Jim Brown and Sam Cooke in 1964.

He's also had a string of hit TV roles, including in The OA, Peaky Blinders, and as President Barack Obama on The Comey Rule.

Kingsley Ben-Adir
Kingsley Ben-Adir. Picture: Alamy

He recently joined the Marvel Cinematic Universe and will play the main villain in Disney+ series Secret Invasion, starring Samuel L Jackson, Ben Mendelsohn, Cobie Smulders, Olivia Colman and Emilia Clarke.

Reinaldo Marcus Green will direct the as-yet unnamed Bob Marley biopic, which lists among its producers Bob's son Ziggy, his daughter Cedella and his wife Rita .

The script comes from Zach Baylin, Frank E Flowers and Terence Winter.

Bob Marley
Bob Marley. Picture: Alamy

The film will not be the first significant Bob Marley movie.

Kevin McDonald's epic 2012 Marley documentary features a mix of archive footage and new interviews with those who knew him best, including Bunny Wailer, Rita Marley, Lee 'Scratch' Perry and others.

On the stage, Get Up, Stand Up! The Bob Marley Musical by Lee Hall opened in London last year.