Not to be confused with the B.B. King feature film that Wendell Pierce is attached to star in (B.B. King And I)…
First announced at the Berlinale in February, GFM Films' feature-length blues documentary BB King: The Life Of Riley, is narrated by Morgan Freeman, and includes interviews with the following and more: Bill Cosby, Carlos Santana, Bruce Willis, Bonnie Raitt, Eric Clapton, and others.
The film covers not only King’s life and musical career.
Director Jon Brewer, who has worked closely with King, shot more than 200 hours of footage for the project, and had this to say in an interview with Guitarist magazine (the December issue):
"B.B. is still giving everything to it, and he has a big history… It was an absolute privilege to be asked to make this film – it’s B.B. King’s life… One aspect tops all others. There’s this little boy who loved going to school, didn’t so much love going to church, but so respected his mother and did what his mother told him. And suddenly she was fading; he saw his mother die, that then led to how he relied upon his grandmother and worked the land, who was also fading in years, so they could eat. And then she died – as a nine or 10-year old; his life had been crushed. He managed to become a sharecropper, which is somebody who earns $2.50 a month to pay for his rent and his food. I have seen the ledgers that still exist where he cleared his debt and his grandmother’s debt, before his father came to collect him. That man survived and became The King of the Blues. To do what he has done is remarkable."
King's 87th birthday was yesterday, so this trailer is certainly timely.
The film was sold to a UK distributor G2, for a fall theatrical release, starting on October 10th.
No USA distributor yet for a project that's being called "very cinematic."
Watch the first trailer below: