Wednesday, May 5, 2021

Clive Davis Says His Whitney Houston Biopic Will Be ‘No Holds Barred’ Portrait of Singer

(L-R) Musician Alicia Keys, Chairman and CEO BMG USA Clive Davis and singer Whitney Houston. (Feb. 9, 2008 – Source: Vince Bucci/Getty Images North America)

*Clive Davis says the biopic he’s working on about the life and career of Whitney Houston will be a “no holds barred” portrait of the artist, and he won’t sugar-coat anything. 

Speaking to Variety, Davis, who signed Whitney to her record contract and was her mentor, says, “I have a mission here. I have a mission to make sure that for all time that the full picture of Whitney Houston is captured in a no-holds-barred film that is musically rich and shows her genius and more of her character than we have seen to date.”

In the latest episode of Variety podcast “Strictly Business,” Davis explains that he and “Bohemian Rhapsody” and “The Two Popes” screenwriter Anthony McCarten teamed to develop the script for the biopic, and to raise their own financing. 

“There was a fierce competition for the movie,” Davis says. “I’m happy to say the reaction to the script was good. Almost every studio head called to tell me about their passion for the project. They know Whitney has been captured and the opportunity here is so special and unique.”

READ MORE: Whitney Houston’s Brother Michael Confessed to Feeling Responsible for Her Death

Davis also says the movie will feature Whitney’s original recordings, so the actor cast to play the singer won’t be requited to have amazing vocals. 

Stella Meghie is on board to direct the biopic titled “I Wanna Dance With Somebody” after Houston’s 1987 megahit. 

According to producers of the film, it’s a “joyous, emotional and heart-breaking celebration of the life and music of the greatest female R&B pop vocalist of all time, tracking her journey from obscurity to musical superstardom.”

Meanwhile, there are several films and documentaries about Houston’s life and career, but none received the official blessing from Houston’s family. Davis’ project is the first authorized biopic that has the full support of the estate of the music icon.  

“I Wanna Dance With Somebody” will be released Thanksgiving Day 2022.

Ny MaGee
Ny MaGee is a screenwriter and freelance reporter from Chicago -- currently living in Los Angeles and covering A-list entertainment for various outlets, including She has worked for: Miramax, MTV & VH1, The Jim Henson Company, Hallmark Channel, Paramount Pictures, and for iconic indie film producer Roger Corman.



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