Casting biopics is a subject that is always fraught with opinions, as people are very vocal about their favorite artists and celebrities. Lifetime has made a name for itself in profiling influential Black icons in its television movies, but the latest castings have people scratching their heads.
Lifetime has had a string of successful biopics, with 2020 featuring one of the most-watched movies ever for the network, The Clark Sisters: First Ladies of Gospel, based off iconic gospel group The Clark Sisters, their mother, Mattie Moss Clark and their journeys in the world of Gospel music fame. The film even featured original members of the Clark Sisters family, as Karen Clark-Sheard’s daughter, Kierra Sheard, played her in the movie for Lifetime.
Having won his first Oscar for Ray, the Ray Charles biopic that came out in 2005, Jamie Foxx has always been held in high regard for his amazing rendering of the blind, troubled but talented soul singer. The successful comedian has also always gotten acclaim for the range of impressions that he does, one of which includes Mike Tyson. He’s sharing how he’s been transforming himself to take on the role of Tyson and what he hopes to bring to the role.
Foxx says that he wants to play a version of Mike that shows his nuanced, human side as opposed to just the controversies and gossip that have always followed him.
“We want to show, everybody evolves,” Foxx shared. “I think when we lay the layers on Mike Tyson in this story, I think everybody from young and old will be able to understand this man’s journey.”
Though he may have the voice and mannerisms down pat, what he’s now admitted to focusing on is getting his body right so that he can channel Tyson’s physicality.
He told Mark Birnbaum recently of his routine to transform into the greatest heavyweight boxer of all time. “What I’m doing right now is changing the body. So now what I do, every other day, I do 60 pull-ups, we do 60 dips, we do 100 push-ups,” Foxx said, adding that he’s mostly just focusing on “the top half” and not worrying about his legs.
“I ain’t got no calf muscles, so we’re gonna have to get some prosthetics for that,” Foxx joked.
Not having the same calf muscles as the Heavyweight Champion of the World can be understood, but when the casting looks more like current day R&B singers, as opposed 90’s era women rap icons, fans are going to notice. That’s what is happening with the Salt-N-Pepa Lifetime biopic movie, which has just been given a release date.
Airing on January 23rd, the movie features G.G. Townson as Cheryl “Salt” James and Laila Odom as Sandra “Pepa” Denton. Monique Paul will play the group’s DJ, Deidra Roper aka DJ Spinderella — though she’s not in the photos released that fans are calling out.
The two actresses are accused of looking like present-day R&B singer Ciara and rapper Missy Elliott, instead of the iconic rap stars that the movie is about.
A string of tweets follows, which compare the two actresses to other celebrities such as Dej Loaf, Tamar & Toni Braxton, Kelly Rowland, Olivia, Keyshia Cole and others.
Now this doesn’t look like the same quality I saw in the trailers..— J. A. H. (@JukeboxAries) November 28, 2020
With one fan commenting, “Now this doesn’t look like the same quality I saw in the trailers,” it’s unsure of how the end result will be received. See the trailer for yourself below.
See more reactions below:
We would like to take away biopic rights from Lifetime.— MR. Scorp 🔪🔪 (@kyngkey__) November 28, 2020
* Lemon-N-Pepper— AuntieJ.Blige (@mook_lyde) November 28, 2020
I thought this was Ciara & Keyshia Cole— Anthez Williams (@A10CHUN) November 28, 2020
Lifetime need to stay away from folks legacy— 🙏🏽 #BLM (@iamTyCarter) November 27, 2020
Lifetime must be stopped— Ann Marie Lastrassi (@REDRUMpeace) November 27, 2020