The life and career of American singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and music producer, Rick James, is receiving the screen treatment, with news of an upcoming series on the prolific and iconic musician in the works. Titled Super Freak, after one of James's most well-known hits, the series has been described as a funkadelic mix of music biopic and true crime.
Written and executive produced by Randy McKinnon and executive produced by Ty James, daughter of the late artist, Super Freak chronicles the stars plans for a comeback in the early 1990s amidst a heated trial that threatened to destroy his legacy. The series will also discuss how timely issues of race, privilege, and the grey area of image vs. reality for celebrities impacted James throughout his career.
“We are truly ecstatic about this new project with UCP and extremely excited to work with the writer Randy McKinnon,” shared Ty James.
“We are confident he can give the fans exactly what they have been waiting on, plus some. This will be a magic carpet ride, with ups and downs, joys and pain — a story of perseverance and tenacity, with the music being the greatest navigation system.”
Also joining the team of creatives behind the series is best-selling author and award-winning reporter Mike Sager. Sager, who is on board as executive producer, first met James in 1995 while he was working for Rolling Stones. At the time, Sager was writing a profile on the star titled The Rise and Fall of a Super Freak and from then on, the pair remained close friends.
The series is the latest addition to a long list of true-story inspiration for UCP, the division of Universal Studio Group helming Super Freak. The studio recently announced the production of Little Rock Nine, a series from Seth Macfarlane and the late Chadwick Boseman, which follows the Michelle Carter texting suicide case.
While a network or streaming service is yet to be attached to the Rick James series, keep your eye on this space as we learn more.