This isn’t Dr. Dre’s first venture in film production, though the Marvin Gaye retrospective will be a challenging undertaking.
The film is still in its early stages — make that very, very early stages. But according to Variety, Andre Young — aka Dr. Dre — has already made more progress than his predecessors. The Marvin Gaye biopic, which chronicles the legendary soul singer, has apparently received the approval Gaye’s surviving family.
According to Variety, the green light also includes approval from Sony/ATV to use Gaye’s music. And we’re assuming that recording rights are either sealed or coming soon.
The film will undoubtedly swirl around Berry Gordy’s Motown, which played an important role in the development of soul music in America. The recording company is known for artists including The Temptations, The Supremes, Smokey Robinson, Gladys Knight & the Pips, and Stevie Wonder, with Marvin Gaye cut from the same incredible cloth.
Marvin was a league if his own. Songs like “I Heard It Through The Grapevine,” “How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You),” and “Let’s Get It On” remain in heavy rotation today. Marvin was shot dead by his father in the 80s at age 44.
Getting the family’s approval is no small feat. F. Gary Gray, Cameron Crowe, Scott Rudin, and Lenny Kravitz have all unsuccessfully attempted to secure the blessing of the Gaye estate for a film. The denials effectively torpedoed the attempts.
Dr. Dre’s overtures were obviously better received, possibly because of his success with the 2015 release, Straight Outta Compton. The smash hit chronicled the rise of N.W.A, of which Young was a critical member.
As for now, the Gaye film is merely a concept, though if Straight Outta Compton offers any preview, this will be a riveting, realistic look at musical history.