GET ON UP
You know him by many names: "Mr. Dynamite,"
"The Godfather of Soul," "The Hardest Working Man
in Show Business."
But now get to know the man behind the legend.
Born dirt-poor in South Carolina in the middle of the
Great Depression in 1933, James Brown survived a young
life of abandonment, abuse, reform school, jail. Nobody
ever taught him the rules.
So he was destined from the start to break them.
As an amateur boxer or a street-corner busker, he
channeled hard knocks into a beat that echoed his own
pulsing life force. One of the most influential performers
to ever hit the stage of popular music, the most sampled
artist in history continues to inspire and inform our most
popular and relevant artists today.
In his follow-up to the four-time Oscar-nominated
breakout The Help, TATE TAYLOR directs 42's
CHADWICK BOSEMAN as James Brown in Get on Up.
Based on Brown's incredible life story, the film gives
a fearless look inside the music, moves and moods
of the icon, taking audiences on the journey from his
impoverished childhood to his evolution into one of the
most influential figures of the 20th century.
Academy Award-winning producer BRIAN GRAZER,
who has brought to the screen memorable and lasting stories
of accomplishment over adversity, such as John Nash in
A Beautiful Mind and Eminem's semiautobiographical
8 Mile, has worked for more than a decade trying to bring
this unique tale to audiences. With just the right team, this
longtime dream has become a reality.
When not serving as The Rolling Stones frontman,
MICK JAGGER has spent much of the past two decades
producing films, television and documentaries. Jagger,
who was approached by the James Brown Estate to deliver
the artist's story to the screen, came aboard to produce
the drama. Together, he and Grazer lead the team that has
painstakingly taken the tale of Brown's fascinating life and
is triumphantly delivering it to audiences across the globe.
Now, with director/producer Taylor at the helm, the
dynamic story of Brown's life, laced with electrifying
performance set pieces, unfolds.
In his starring role, Boseman embodies Brown's
charisma, drive and musical genius. With countless hours of
hard work, he's also mastered the man's incredible moves.
Get on Up's music sequences include highlights from
the dazzling Apollo Theater concert of 1962, the game-changing
throw-down on the T.A.M.I. Show filmed in
1964, the historic Boston Garden gig of 1968 and the fullon
funk of the Olympia theatre concert in Paris in 1971.
There's much to ponder between the beats. Instead
of the expected cradle-to-grave narrative, the biopic
unfolds in a nonlinear style that allows James Brown
to speak directly to us and tell his story of finding
astonishing mastery over adversity.
Actors in key supporting roles
include Taylor's fellow collaborators
from The Help, Oscar nominee
VIOLA DAVIS (Doubt) as Susie
Brown, James' mother, and Oscar
winner OCTAVIA SPENCER
(Fruitvale Station) as his Aunt
Honey. The drama also stars
NELSAN ELLIS (television's True
Blood) as Bobby Byrd, James'
fellow musician and lifelong
friend; DAN AYKROYD (Driving
Miss Daisy) as Ben Bart, his
longtime manager and agent;
CRAIG ROBINSON (This Is the
End) as Maceo Parker, James'
lead saxophonist in The Famous
Flames; LENNIE JAMES (Snatch)
as Joe Brown, James' father; TIKA
SUMPTER (Ride Along) as backup
singer Yvonne Fair; and JILL
SCOTT (Baggage Claim) as DeeDee, Brown's second
wife. In his feature film debut, multi-platinum-selling
singer/songwriter ALOE BLACC portrays original Flame
For his new film, Taylor recruited many key
members of his behind-the-scenes team from The
Help. They include director of photography STEPHEN
GOLDBLATT (TV's Angels in America), production
designer MARK RICKER (Julie & Julia), costume
designer SHAREN DAVIS (Django Unchained) and
composer THOMAS NEWMAN (Saving Mr. Banks).
MICHAEL MCCUSKER (Walk the Line) serves as the
drama's editor, while AAKOMON JONES (Pitch Perfect)
performs double duty as the film's choreographer and
Bobby Bennett, another of Brown's back-up singers.
Grazer produces Get on Up for Imagine Entertainment,
with Jagger and VICTORIA PEARMAN (Shine a Light)
producing under their Jagged Films banner. Imagine's
ERICA HUGGINS (Flightplan) also serves as producer,
while Taylor produces under his Wyolah Films label.
With a screenplay by JEZ BUTTERWORTH (Edge
of Tomorrow) & JOHN-HENRY BUTTERWORTH
(Fair Game) and a story by STEVEN BAIGELMAN
(Foreground) Maceo Parker (CRAIG ROBINSON) and James Brown bring down the house.
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