×

Barry Jenkins to Direct Alvin Ailey Biopic

“Moonlight” writer-director Barry Jenkins will direct a biopic about iconic choreographer Alvin Ailey.

Fox Searchlight first announced the project in March 2018, saying it had the support of the Ailey Organization. Singer-songwriter Alicia Keys is producing with Susan Lewis through her AK Worldwide production company, along with Judy Kinberg, Rachel Cohen and Jana Edelbaum from iDeal Partners. The untitled project is a co-production between AK Worldwide, iDeal Partners and Jenkins’ Pastel. Jenkins will be an executive producer alongside Jana Edelbaum and Susan Lewis.

Julian Breece is writing the script. Ailey, who was raised in rural Texas by a single mother, founded the interracial Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in New York City in 1958 and helped popularize modern dance. His “Revelations” became one of the most-performed modern dance pieces in history.

Ailey received the Kennedy Center Honors in 1988, a year before he died at the age of 58 from AIDS-related complications. In 2014, President Barack Obama selected Ailey to be a posthumous recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

The project includes the rights to Jennifer Dunning’s biography “Alvin Ailey: A Life in Dance.” Fox Searchlight and the producers will be working with the dance company’s artistic director Robert Battle and artistic director emerita Judith Jamison.

Jenkins won the Academy Award for best adapted screenplay for “Moonlight” and received an Oscar nomination for directing the coming-of-age best picture winner. He was nominated this year for best adapted screenplay for “If Beale Street Could Talk,” which he also directed.

Jenkins is repped by CAA, Silent R Management and Lichter Grossman. The news was first reported by Deadline.

More Music

  • Terry Wakefield Exits Sony/ATV to Head

    Terry Wakefield Exits Sony/ATV to Head Up A&R at UMPG Nashville

    After a decades-long tenure at Sony/ATV Nashville, Terry Wakefield has followed another alumnus, Troy Tomlinson, across town to take a top position at Universal Music Publishing Group Nashville. Wakefield is senior VP of A&R at UMPG after having been senior VP of creative in his previous post. Personal loyalty to Tomlinson, UMPG Nashville’s recently named chairman/CEO, [...]

  • Sally Williams at PBS Country Music

    Sally Williams to Leave Longtime Opry Home for Top Post at Live Nation in Nashville

    Nashville executive Sally Williams is leaving Opry Entertainment, where she rose to the top over a two-decade tenure there, to join Live Nation’s regional office as the president of Nashville music and business strategy, the company announced Monday. Live Nation said Williams will not only lead programming and marketing for their concerts in the area, [...]

  • 'Welcome to New York The Empire

    Woodstock 50's Permit Denial Heap Keeps Growing

    In what’s become a broken record for music journalists everywhere, Woodstock 50 was once again denied a permit to hold its event, slated for Aug. 16 to 18, as a daytime festival at Vernon Downs in upstate New York. Previous attempts to convince the town of Vernon, on June 18 and July 3, were rejected [...]

  • London's CODA Agency Formally Becomes a

    Paradigm Agency Formally Absorbs London's CODA Into the Fold

    After five years of working together, London’s CODA Agency has formally become a part of Paradigm and will continue under its U.S. partner’s banner. The London office of what is now a fully integrated Paradigm will continue to be led by Alex Hardee, Tom Schroeder, James Whitting and Dave Hallybone. In a statement otherwise laden [...]

  • Mariah Carey

    Mariah Carey Signs With CAA

    Mariah Carey has returned to CAA for representation worldwide after moving to UTA in 2015. Throughout her 30-year career, the five-time Grammy winner has released some of the best-selling albums of all time, including “Music Box,” which racked up more than 28 million in sales, and “Daydream,” which sold 20 million copies. Her other albums, [...]

  • Art Neville of The Meters performs

    Art Neville of the Meters and the Neville Brothers Dies at 81

    Art Neville, one of the key figures of New Orleans music as a member of the Meters and later the Neville Brothers, died Monday. He was 81. Neville’s manager, Kent Sorrell, confirmed the death. “It was peaceful,” Sorrell told Nola.com. “He passed away at home with his adoring wife Lorraine by his side. He toured [...]

  • Roddy Rich

    Roddy Ricch Signs Wide-Ranging Deal With Kobalt

    Kobalt has signed Roddy Ricch to a wide-ranging exclusive worldwide deal in which the company will have full administration of the rapper, singer, songwriter and producer’s catalog, as well as publishing, creative services and synch for his future works. Ricch is a relative newcomer, first emerging onto the music scene in 2017 with the release [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content