The 52-year-old actor has reportedly acquired the film and TV rights to Prince of Darkness by Shane White, with plans to adapt the book. He will star and produce the film, working with Steven Baigelman, who he worked with on the Miles Davis biopic.

Prince of Darkness: The Untold Story of Jeremiah G. Hamilton, Wall Street’s First Black Millionaire sheds light on the obscure story of Hamilton, who was mentioned in an obituary for Cornelius Vanderbilt as the tycoon’s true rival. White’s book details the rise of Hamilton as he is chased out of Haiti and becomes a broker and land agent in 19th century New York, his success prickling both white and black society. He broke many taboos of the times, including marrying a white woman and owning stock in rail companies on whose trains he wasn’t legally allowed to ride. When Hamilton died, obits at the time called him the richest black man in America.

Cheadle is an actor, writer, producer, and director. He had an early role in Hamburger Hill (1987), before building his career in the 1990s with performances in Devil in a Blue Dress (1995), Rosewood (1997) and Boogie Nights (1997). He started a collaboration with director Steven Soderbergh that resulted in the films Out of Sight (1998), Traffic (2000) and Ocean’s Eleven (2001). Other films include Volcano (1997), The Rat Pack (1998), Things Behind the Sun (2001), Swordfish (2001), Crash (2004), Ocean’s Twelve (2004), Ocean’s Thirteen (2007), Reign Over Me (2007), Talk to Me (2007), Traitor (2008) and The Guard. Cheadle co-wrote, directed and starred in Miles Ahead (2015), based on the life of jazz musician Miles Davis. He plays the superhero Colonel James ‘Rhodey’ Rhodes / War Machine in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and has appeared in Iron Man 2 (2010), Iron Man 3 (2013), Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015) and Captain America: Civil War (2016).

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