Seeing double! Little Richard: I Am Everything filmmaker Lisa Cortes claims that James Brown would sometimes act as a stand-in for Little Richard.
“Little Richard would get so busy that he had no time to fulfill all his gigs, so his protégé James Brown would dress up like him and take his gigs,” the Oscar-nominated Cortes told the crowd during a Q&A at Martha’s Vineyard Film Festival, according to Page Six.
Cortes’ documentary is meant to remind people that the “Tutti Frutti” singer was “the originator.. the emancipator… the architect of rock n roll.”
According to the Page Six, Cortes is expected to host a second screening of the film Thursday (Aug. 10). CBS News’ Michelle Miller will moderate a Q&A after the screening.
To many, Little Richard was the founding father of rock and roll. His gender-bending persona and flamboyant clothing embodied what the genre was all about.
The new documentary “tells the story of the Black queer origins of rock n’ roll, exploding the whitewashed canon of American pop music to reveal the innovator — the originator — Richard Penniman.”
The documentary Little Richard: I Am Everything premieres on CNN on Sept. 4.
Richard passed away in Tullahoma, Tenn., on May 9, 2020. He was 87. His cause of death was bone cancer.
In 2006, Brown died of a heart attack in Atlanta in the early hours of Christmas morning. He was 73.