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Marvin Gaye Biopic Sexual Healing Shuts Down Production

With three weeks to go on a planned nine-and-a-half week shoot, it’s being reported that production has stopped on a Marvin Gaye biopic, Sexual Healing, and various troubles have the future of the movie in question.

The report surfaced on ScreenDaily, which says that the film has “stalled” due to potential cash flow problems that might have been resolved. Well-placed sources tell the site that crew members have not been paid, and that shooting on the film stopped more than a month ago “because of scheduling and location issues.”

The role of the late Motown singer was originally supposed to go to Lenny Kravitz, but he was replaced by Law & Order co-star Jesse L. Martin before production got underway. Director Julien Temple, a music-feature director, cast S. Epatha Merkerson as Gaye’s mother, Alberta.

The film wouldn’t be a tradition Motown piece, but instead focus on a time when the singer spent years in Europe trying to curb a dangerous drug addiction. The singer’s son, Marvin Gaye III, spoke out against the script and, according to reports, convinced Kravitz to lave the production. But these financial problems are a bigger issue. According to ScreenDaily, an American investor was delayed in providing investments, and it held up the crew. They say Brendan Gleeson, who has been cast as Gaye’s promoter, Freddy Cousaert, has been paid up until this point and remains committed to the film.

Likely, the money will begin flowing on Healing soon, and the production will be able to wrap. The delays could affect when we finally see the movie, but if it ends up winning over audiences, this rocky production schedule will become a distant memory.

Sean O’Connell is a journalist and CinemaBlend’s Managing Editor. He's frequently found on Twitter at @Sean_OConnell. ReelBlend cohost. A movie junkie who's Infatuated with comic-book films. Helped get the Snyder Cut released, then wrote a book about it.