The trade magazine notes that Battle will provide choreography on the production written and set to be directed by Bryan Barber — who teamed with the duo on the videos for "Hey Ya" and "Roses" (an homage to West Side Story) off their dual album "Speakerboxx/The Love Below."
OutKast's Andre 3000 and Big Boi will star in the musical, a first for HBO Films, said to be slated to start production late this summer. The period work will include singing and dancing to contemporary music including hits from the aforementioned 2003 Grammy Award winning Album of the Year as well as original songs written by OutKast to appear on a forthcoming release.
Battle has won three Tony Awards as a performer for his turns in Miss Saigon, Sophisticated Ladies and The Tap Dance Kid. Other acting credits on Broadway include The Wiz, Dreamgirls Bob Fosse's Dancin' and Chicago. He has served as choreographer for television's "Fired Up," "Sister, Sister," "Child Star: The Shirley Temple Story" and as associate choreographer to Debbie Allen on the 65th and 66th Academy Awards.
HBO Films presentations have included the screen versions of the Tectonic Theatre's The Laramie Project and Tony Kushner's Angels in America. Recent films have include stage stars as Nine's Antonio Banderas ("And Starring Pancho Villa as Himself"), Private Lives' Alan Rickman and Topdog/ Underdog's Mos Def ("Something the Lord Made") and Avenue Q's Jordan Gelber (the upcoming "Everyday People"). Ruben Santiago-Hudson's Lackawanna Blues is currently in production under the direction of George C. Wolfe.
Former high school rivals, Andre 3000 (Andre Benjamin) and Big Boi (Antwan Patton) formed OutKast out of mutual respect for each other's skills. The group signed right out of high school went on to record the albums "ATLiens," "Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik," "Aquemini," and their Grammy-winning "Stankonia." Among their songs are "Player's Ball," "B.O.B.," "So Fresh, So Clean," "Rosa Parks," "The Whole World," "Ms. Jackson" and "The Way You Move." HBO spokespersons could not confirm any details about the project.
For more information on HBO Films, visit the website at www.hbo.com/films.