Friday, June 09, 2006

Cheadle in Toronto to "Talk To Me"

Actor Don "Hotel Rawanda" Cheadle will star in "Talk To Me', directed by Kasi "Eve's Bayou" Lemmons and distributed by Focus Features.

Toronto filming starts June 12.

Premise of the bio-pic focuses on broadcast personality/community activist Ralph "Petey" Greene (Cheadle), a 1960's/'70s Washington disc jockey. Considered a comic genius, Greene 'speechified' and rhymed his way to success, using lessons he learned from his unconventional grandmother, 'A'nt Pig'.

He grew up poor in Georgetown, rising from the depths of 'being a wine-head bum' and Lorton Reformatory convict to become an award-winning broadcaster, comedian, champion of the poor and subject of the book "Laugh If You Like, Ain’t a Damn Thing Funny".

At his funeral in January 1984, an estimated 20,000 people lined up in cold temperatures to pay their respects.

His signature sign-off rap from his Emmy-award winning TV series Petey Greene's Washington:

"I’ll tell it to the hot, I’ll tell it to the cold, I’ll tell it to the young, I’ll tell it to the old, I don’t want no laughin’, I don’t want no cryin’, and most of all, no signifyin’. Achtt! This is Petey Greene’s Washington."