Alternate timeline: Marlon Wayans as Richard Pryor in this old audition footage for the comedian’s biopic

As you may recall, comedy fans have waited several years to see a major motion picture biography of the legendary Richard Pryor.

It’s happening now, directed by Lee Daniels and starring Mike Epps as Pryor, with Oprah Winfrey playing Pryor’s grandmother, who raised the young comedian in a brothel.

But one of the possible iterations of the Pryor biopic would have cast Marlon Wayans in the titular role, and today, we finally can see what that may have looked like. Here is seven minutes of audition footage, with Wayans as Pryor first in an interview session with a doctor played by Omar Epps, and then a couple of minutes of emotionally-charged stand-up, played straight to the camera.

Roll the clip! (h/t Indiewire)

For comparison’s sake, here is an all-too-brief snippet of Mike Epps impersonating Pryor, from his stand-up tour. Mike Epps has been making promotional rounds the past few weeks talking about the upcoming production of the Pryor biopic, but hasn’t dipped too much into teasing any of those TV talk shows or morning radio jocks with more of an impersonation. So this is what we get for now. Roll the clip!

Sean L. McCarthy

Editor and publisher since 2007, when he was named New York's Funniest Reporter. Former newspaper reporter at the New York Daily News, Boston Herald and smaller dailies and community papers across America. Loves comedy so much he founded this site.

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