Fox Searchlight has shelved Kasi Lemmons’ $10 million feature musical “Black Nativity” less than a month before its apparent start of production date in New York City says The Hollywood Reporter.
What undid the project has been men, specifically the project has had enormous difficulty locking down its male lead with potentials like Samuel L. Jackson and Laurence Fishburne passing on the film.
Based on the Langston Hughes play, the story follows the teenage son of a single mother in Baltimore who is sent to Harlem to spend Christmas with the grandparents he has never met. Added to that are a couple of Christmas carol numbers sung gospel-style.
Whomever is cast has to be able to both sing and pass as the father of 31-year-old Jennifer Hudson who plays the single mother.
63-year-old Jackson seems the ideal candidate, but his pay demands were simply too high for the low-budget project. Angela Bassett has already been cast in the grandmother role.