Former NBA player Matt Barnes’ first major venture since officially retiring is developing a Huey P. Newton biopic. He announced in February that the Power To The People movie is a go, though there isn’t much information about the studio or other producers. Today, he dished some more about the project on The Breakfast Club. The film apparently has a $20 million budget. He said that Bryan Barber is directing the movie, Dr. Dre wants to score it, and the film will boast some well-known actors. Keith Powers will play the iconic Black Panthers co-founder Newton, while Hollywood veterans Wood Harris and Hill Harper are also involved.
One compelling casting preference he mentioned is Beyonce as Angela Davis. He said he’s “hopefully in talks” with Beyonce, which doesn’t say much for Queen Bey’s actual interest in playing the feminist and civil rights icon. Davis was a prominent member of the Black Panthers, and is still teaching, speaking and writing books to this day. She’s revered in the Black community as a freedom fighter and prison abolitionist – as is Beyonce as an artist and pop culture icon.
Beyonce famously did a tribute to the Black Panthers during Super Bowl 50 to commemorate the movement’s 50th anniversary, which Davis commended in 2016:
I can say that I am happy that Beyoncé decided to do this evocative performance. I embrace the fact that there is a broad conversation that was staged by that performance.
There would be even more conversation – of all kinds – if Beyonce were to actually sign on to play her.