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Mike Epps is joining the cast of the upcoming Zoe Saldana-starring Nina Simone biopic, Nina. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Epps has been cast as comedian Richard Pryor, who opened for Simone in the early 1960s when both of them were just starting out in their careers. In her 1992 autobiography, Simone divulged that Pryor often suffered from severe bouts of performance anxiety, and that she often calmed him down by rocking him back and forth before he went on stage.

Nina begins shooting this week in Los Angeles.

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[via The Hollywood Reporter]