Legendary New York street artist Jean-Michel Basquiat was one of the most influential creatives in contemporary history, his name usually attached to the likes of Andy Warhol and Keith Haring.
In this new unnamed biopic, If Beale Street Could Talk’s Stephan James will star as the late artist, which will explore his rise into the art world from an anonymous graffiti artist to international fame, his friendship with Warhol, and events leading to his death in 1988.
According to Variety, the limited series will be co-produced by James and actor Shamier Anderson’s Bay Mills Studios, and Boat Rocker Studios. Currently, under development, the series continues its search for a writer. At present time, Bay Mills is under a first-look deal with Boat Rocker.
In a statement by president of scripted for Boat Rocker Studios, Steve Lescroart, he shared, “We’re grateful to be working with Shamier, Stephan, and the entire Bay Mills Studios team to tell the story of a visionary artist whose profound cultural influence only continues to grow with time. We know that audiences around the world will be captivated.”
Most recently in the news, Basquiat’s 1982 triptych Portrait of the Artist as a Young Derelict is set to start at $30 million this spring by Christie’s Auction House. Perhaps the most important neo-expressionist artist of all time, the anti-capitalist Brooklyn native used his art as a means of criticism of racial systems through social commentary and examining the Black experience of 1980s New York.
“I am thrilled to partner with Boat Rocker to bring to life the story of Jean-Michel Basquiat,” said James. “Jean-Michel is an artist I have long revered, 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 simply be one of the greatest honors of my career.”