"We're doing it together -- it's going to happen," Lee told MTV News in 2009. "I want to hear James Brown’s voice. That’s just my personal taste."
When Snipes got into legal trouble with the IRS, casting turned to Eddie Murphy, who as recently as this year said that Lee's script for the film was "incredible."
"That's a great, great piece," Murphy told BlackTree TV. "I wish it could come together. It has everything and his story is incredible. Imagine how incredible Ray Charles' story was -- and he's at the piano. James is doing splits and running and jump off the wall.