Bob Marley Biopic In-Fighting

The family of Bob Marley has refused to license any of his music for a biopic that the Weinsteins are planning – this despite the fact that his widow, Rita Marley, is the executive producer says Reuters.

The reason seems to be the competing Martin Scorsese documentary being produced by Tuff Gong Pictures and Shangri La, which is the first theatrical documentary to license Marley songs.

The family members involved in the Scorsese project claim they were unaware that the Weinstein project would be unveiled so soon and believe its late 2009 release date would interfere with their documentary’s February 2010 release which is timed to Marley’s birthday.

The efforts of Blue Mountain Music, which is Marley’s music publisher, are all being put into the doco according to company president Chris Blackwell. He adds that “The Weinstein project has put the documentary into jeopardy”, though some claim this is just a ploy to try and raise the price and compel the Weinsteins to buy Marley’s music rights.

Blackwell says that he expects a deal to be reached soon whereby the Weinstein Co. would take a stake in the Scorsese docu and agree to postpone its biopic.