Fans of the art world can begin to rejoice Stephan James‘ next limited series. The actor and producer is preparing to bring the story of the neo-expressionist and revolutionary artist to the screens Jean-Michel Basquiat. He was one of the youngest artists to exhibit at the Whitney Biennial in New York, and the Emmy nominee is attached to playing the artist himself.
The untitled series is co-developed by James with Shamir Andersonwho has already worked with James on another biopic: they both starred in Racethe story of a legendary athlete Jesse Owenswho won four gold medals at the Berlin Olympics in 1936. So it makes perfect sense that the duo would come together again to tell the story of yet another black legend.
Basquiat used the canvas to express his experience of growing up as a black man and questioned power structures, classicism, class struggles and, of course, racism. Member of the “club of 27”, Basquiat died at the age of 27 of an overdose, and since then his paintings have taken on enormous value. Basquiat’s most famous work of art is an untitled painting that depicts a giant skull-like form against a blue black blob. It sold for $110.5 million in 2017, and not only became Basquiat’s most expensive work of all time, but it’s also one of the ten most expensive works of art. all time.
Talking about his next project on Basquiat, James revealed the influence of the artist on his career and it is with humility that he plays his idol:
” Jean Michel [Basquiat] is an artist I have revered for a long time, and someone who has greatly influenced my work over the years. To embody such a revolutionary, whose influence in the modern era of pop culture is simply immeasurable, will quite simply be one of the greatest honors of my career.
Steve Lescroartthe president of Boat Rocker Studios for Scripted Projects – the company co-producing the limited series – also weighed in on the progress of the story and shared his excitement:
“We are grateful to work with Shamier, Stephan and the entire Bay Mills Studios team to tell the story of a visionary artist whose profound cultural influence continues to grow over time. We know audiences around the world will be captivated.
Further details on the Basquiat limited series, such as the full main cast, directors, and release date, have yet to be announced.
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