Stanley Tucci has been cast to play Arista Records boss Clive Davis in upcoming new Whitney Houston biopic I Wanna Dance With Somebody.
According to Deadline, Tucci joins Naomi Ackie who will play Houston in the feature film, which is written by Anthony McCarten and directed by Kasi Lemmons.
Davis is the lawyer-turned-music producer and record executive who discovered Houston before anyone knew who she was. He helped guide her to superstardom and remained friends with her right up until her death in 2012 at the age of 48.
Alongside McCarten’s Muse of Fire Productions, the film is being produced by Houston’s former manager Pat Houston on behalf of the Houston Estate.
Other producers on the project include Davis; Larry Mestel on behalf of Primary Wave Music; Denis O’Sullivan (Bohemian Rhapsody) and Jeff Kalligheri for Compelling Pictures; Matt Jackson of Jackson Pictures; and Molly Smith, Trent Luckinbill and Thad Luckinbill for Black Label Media. Primary Wave Music is a partner of the Houston Estate.
I Wanna Dance With Somebody – named after Houston’s chart-topping 1987 hit – is scheduled to arrive in cinemas on December 23, 2022.
In a recent interview, the Supernova actor discussed how doctors found a tumour on the base of his tongue.
“It was too big to operate, so they had to do high-dose radiation and chemo,” he told Vera. “I’d vowed I’d never do anything like that, because my first wife died of cancer, and to watch her go through those treatments for years was horrible.
“The kids were great, but it was hard for them,” he added. “I had a feeding tube for six months. I could barely make it to the twins’ high school graduation.”