Texas-born actor Dennis Quaid recently announced the formation of a production company, the first of which is American pride, a biopic of the great country music Charley Pride, who lived in Dallas and died here of complications from COVID-19 last December. He was 86 years old.
The Hollywood merchant site Deadline reports who Quaid will also star in the film, playing the role of “Cowboy” Jack Clement, who, according to the website, “wrote and recorded with Pride many of his groundbreaking hits.” Clement was also a mentor for Quaid during his own musical career.
“Charley Pride was the Jackie Robinson of country music,” Quaid told Deadline. “He became a star at a time when it didn’t seem possible. It is the very interesting story of a man realizing his dreams, the relationship with him and his wife for over 50 years, and how difficult it was for Pride to be regarded by people of his color who gravitated. to other forms of music, let alone C&W fans in the South who were reluctant to welcome a black singer into the fold.
The filmmaker told Deadline he hopes to make a story that documents “how color doesn’t really matter; it’s about reaching people, which makes her story relevant today.
Pride has made the news even in death.
On May 20, Tyler Pride, a police officer from Tyler, Texas, filed a lawsuit in Dallas County Estates Court, challenging the will of his biological father, whose paternity was verified by a Texas court in 1992. The will recognizes the three children shared by Pride. with his widow, Rozene Pride, who is also her husband’s executor and, according to Deadline, a collaborator of Quaid and her husband in the planning of the next film. Rozene and Charley Pride have been married for 64 years.
Inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2000, Pride is also commemorated at the Smithsonian, where in 2015 he became a member of the National Museum of African American History and Culture.
His last performance was in November 2020 in Nashville, where he flew to accept the CMA’s Willie Nelson Lifetime Achievement Award, which aired on ABC during the height of the pandemic. He quickly developed symptoms which turned out to be fatal.
We reached out to Quaid’s new business and family lawyers for Charley Pride and Tyler Pride on Monday, but have yet to hear back.
Deadline’s story gave few clues as to what the movie was going to do except for one.
“Charley had bipolar disorder,” Quaid said, “and had these manic episodes and hallucinations that people were trying to get him to. His wife was instrumental in helping him get over that. He was a little embarrassed about it, but we have passed it.