Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Miles Davis: THE MOVIE

Miles Davis, as played by Tom Cruise


I've been hearing for years that plans are being made for a bio-pic regarding the life of Miles Davis, who is arguably the most famous and controversial jazz musician there ever was. The first thing that probably comes to most people's mind is the question of who would be the most likely actor to play Mr. Davis; the great Don Cheadle is usually the first choice, based on the obvious physical resemblance. Wesley Snipes might be a close second, depending on availability.That being said, I know this might not be the obvious choice, but listen up: if you're talking range, versatility, and still a big box office draw, then the obvious choice for the iconic trumpeter and musical innovator is- Tom Cruise.

Please, hear me out! I just think Tom Cruise is that good an actor. I think he can capture the cool intensity of The Prince Of Darkness as well as anyone alive. Tom Cruise is one of the best in the
Tom Cruise, great actor, or GREATEST ACTOR?
business, although much of his best acting lately has been done while running at top speed, and there probably won't be a lot of that in a Miles movie. Although, that might be something that could be worked into the script. Perhaps Charlie Parker could chase Miles across a 52nd Street rooftop. Or maybe Parker and Davis could be hired by the FBI to track a Russian criminal gang, and prevent them from detonating a nuclear device in downtown Los Angeles. Yeah, that would spice it up a bit.

I know what you're probably thinking: "But George, you big dummy, Miles Davis was African-American, and I'm pretty sure Tom Cruise isn't." Yes this might be true, but the Magic of Hollywood can fix that; the stuff they can do with CGI these days is amazing! Didn't you see Avatar? It would be nothing to transform Cruise into Davis. You'd be surprised what CGI can do: you should see what Kate Winslet really looks like without tons of computer special effects…

And let's face it, you can't walk into a Hollywood executive's office, even with the best ideas, without the big names attached. Here's how I would fill out the rest of the cast:

Charlie Parker would be played by George Clooney. Again, big box office draw.

Max Roach would be played by Kate Winslet, but more for the uncanny physical resemblance.

Gil Evans would be played by Jamie Foxx, only because I think he's still pretty hot after the Oscar win.


Juilianne Moore as John Coltrane
John Coltrane would be played by Juilanne Moore, which is kind of a no-brainer if you think about it.

Marcus Miller…..hmmm….I'm thinking Matt Damon or Justin Timberlake. I think Timberlake would add an edge to it. Plus the kids seem to like him. Wasn't he in that boy band years ago, Menudo?

Miles Davis' wife Francis would be played by Gwyneth Paltrow. If she can convince us she's an alcoholic country singer, this should be no biggie for her.

The rest of the cast we can worry about later. Now, I thought I would include a brief plot synopsis as part of my pitch to the studio. Obviously the synopsis would be "based" on Miles' famous autobiography. However, The truth is usually much duller than fiction, so this preliminary synopsis should give you some ideas on how we could "tweak" Miles' story in order to get a little more zing into the story, so we can get more out of the opening weekend:

Our story starts in a distant galaxy, on the dying planet of Be-Bop, where scientist and trumpeter Lu-Es is putting his baby son Du-We into a spacecraft, which is shot into space just as the planet implodes. The spacecraft lands on Earth on a farm in rural Kansas, where Ma And Pa Davis discover the baby, and adopt him as their own. They name him Miles, because "he must have come from Miles away, from another galaxy." Eventually, they learn that Miles has super powers; he is faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive, and able to inhale massive amounts of cocaine in a single bound. Upon further examination, it becomes obvious that the cocaine is what accounts for the first two "super powers"…..

The Davis family is poor, until they start receiving federal farm subsidies, which then enable them to afford to send young Miles to the Juilliard School in Metropolitan City. Miles is more interested in hanging out with the jazz musicians on 52nd St than studying classical trumpet. He meets Charlie Parker, a saxophonist and Jedi Knight, who takes him under his wing and teaches him the ways of The Force. Miles spends most of his time trying to learn the complex chord changes of modern jazz, and also becomes a master of the light saber. He eventually graduates to a welter-weight saber, and after several light saber battles in Atlantic City, he decides to fight for the title, going 12 rounds with welter-weight Jedi champion Darth "Crazy Legs" La Motta, and loses in a decision.

Cut to 1959; Miles Davis is the most famous trumpeter in the world. He is standing outside of the famous jazz club called Birdland. He is lawfully minding his business, merely shooting heroin, collecting pimp money from his prostitutes, and selling Marijuana to some nearby children. A cop tells Miles to move along. Miles tells him "No Hablo Ingles, Hombre, " and is severely beaten. He falls into a coma, and eventually wakes up in a hospital in Berlin. He insists to the doctors that he is a university professor, scheduled to give a lecture at the Adlon Hotel. He is released, and attempts to find his wife at the hotel. He finds his wife , and she does not recognize him, and is with someone else who claims to be her real husband. Miles eventually figures out that he himself is a CIA assassin, who was sent to Berlin to kill Hitler, but unfortunately, he is 15 years too late.

Cut to 1969, where Miles is in the studio, recording "Bitches Brew." At this point, for some reason, Wynton Marsalis is the narrator, who derides the music as being "not true jazz." The next 10 years are glossed over for some reason….


Anyway, that's what I have so far. There's a whole scene with Miles Davis drag racing with Bill Evans, and there are some evil demons from the the planet Be-Bop, who were banished by Lu-Es and have come to seek revenge on Miles. But that's probably something you could put in Miles Davis II: Electric Boogaloo…..

And just for those of you with no sense of humor, please keep in mind that everything I just said was a JOKE. Also, for real info on the Miles Davis movie in the works, see this link.

http://milesdavis.wordpress.com/

18 comments:

  1. You crazy George! Actually, this is one of the funniest things I've ever read. Then again, speaking of "tweaking Miles' story", did you ever read his autobiography?

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  2. Some important casting omissions I'll correct here:

    Jim Carrey as Dizzy Gillespie
    Justin Beiber as Chet Baker
    Martin Lawrence as Thelonious Monk (and, in a fat suit, as Jimmy Rushing)
    Whoever didn't get the part of Miles Davis as Wayne Shorter

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  3. Helen Hayes having skipped to parts unknown, I thing Cruise is the obvious choice.

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  4. For the drag race: Miles in the yellow Ferrari vs Bill in the back of a yellow cab?

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