As reported by Deadline Hollywood, the lead role for the film, titled Sexual Healing, will now be filled by Law & Order alumnus Jesse L. Martin. Kravitz had been announced to star in the biopic last November.
Soon afterwards, Gaye’s son, Marvin Gaye III, criticized the choice and threatened legal action if Kravitz did not drop out. Martin, who’s in the current season of the NBC series Smash, has a musical background, having been an original cast member in the Broadway musical, Rent. Filming for Sexual Healing is set to begin later this month in Europe.
The script is said to focus on Gaye’s life in the ‘80s, at a time when the singer was reviving his career with help from British promoter Freddy Cousaert. Julien Temple, who’s manned the camera for films about the Sex Pistols and Joe Strummer, is the director.