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Dan Aykroyd, Jill Scott Join Universal, Imagine's James Brown Biopic 'Get On Up' (Exclusive)

Borys Kit
October 31, 2013

Dan Aykroyd and Jill Scott have been cast in Get On Up, Universal and Imagine’s biopic of the Godfather of Soul, James Brown.

Tate Taylor, who helmed The Help, is directing and is also producing along with Imagine’s Brian Grazer and Erica Huggins.

Mick Jagger and Victoria Pearman also producing under their Jagged Films banner.

Chadwick Boseman (42) is portraying Brown in the story that takes the singer from his humble beginnings to the height of stardom, while recounting his battle with drug addiction, arrest for domestic violence, and flirting with financial ruin several times.  

EARLIER: Chadwick Boseman to Play James Brown in Biopic

Aykroyd will play Ben Bart, the president of Universal Attractions, at one time one of New York's largest agencies. The agency repped Brown for over 40 years. 

In a part that is being written specifically for her, Scott will play the Brown's wife.

Viola Davis, Octavia Spencer, and Lennie James are among those cast in the production, which is to start shooting in November. The movie is set for an Oct. 17, 2014 release.

The casting is fitting since Aykroyd, as one of the classic Blues Brothers, has paid tribute to Brown with the acts he did with Jim Belushi.

Aykroyd, repped by CAA and Bloom Hergott, last appeared in HBO’s Behind the Candelabra with Michael Douglas and Matt Damon. He is also executive producing the upcoming Belushi biopic that will star Emile Hirsch and is to shoot next year.

Scott is better known for her dramatic work and starred in HBO's The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency and more recently in Lifetime's Steel Magnolias movie. The actress showed she could do comedy when she stole scenes in last month's Baggage Claim. She is repped by CAA, Shawn Gee, Principato Young, and Morris Yorn.