EXCLUSIVE: Tamala Jones, a regular on ABC’s Castle since its 2009 bow, is set to produce a biopic of iconic Motown singer Tammi Terrell. The pic chronicles the wunderkind songstress who teamed with Marvin Gaye on a string on soulful hits in the 1960s before dying from a brain tumor at age 24.
The feature is based on the book My Sister Tommie written by Terrell’s sister Ludie Montgomery, who is backing the production along with Terrell’s estate. This marks the second Terrell biopic project announced this year, with the first having The Vampire Diaries’ Kat Graham attached as star and producer. Jones was in talks to produce that one as well but now is doing her own version with the estate on her side. The biopic will be the first full-length feature through her Foxy Roxy Productions.
Sean Dwyer and Elizabeth Cullen are also producers, and the screenplay is from Sylvia Jahshan. The untitled project will begin filming next year. Jones, repped by D2 Management and APA, also will take an undisclosed role in the film.
Terrell, who grew up in the streets of Philadelphia, began her career at local concerts and sock hops before becoming a headliner in the James Brown Revue. She scored a record deal with Motown and teamed with Gaye on such hits as “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough,” “Your Precious Love,” “You’re All I Need To Get By” and “Ain’t Nothing Like The Real Thing.”