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Marlon Wayans says he wants to be the “Prince of acting and comedy” in Hollywood

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Marlon Wayans is ready to up the ante on his career. After his dramatic performance as Aretha Franklin‘s first husband, Ted White, in Respect, the comedian-actor says he’s also working behind the scenes to develop new projects.

“I’m going to start developing more drama — a few that I’m developing now,” Wayans tells ABC Audio. “I have a deal at HBO Max. And so, we’re developing all kinds of different vehicles, because [after] Respect…I have my standup special on HBO Max, You Know What It Is, coming out August 19th.”

Marlon says working on other projects besides those that are comedy-based allows him to show his “range and versatility” as an actor and creative.

“I want to be able to do it all,” he says. “I don’t wanna be pigeonholed. I want to be able to do everything: from parody to sketch to romantic comedies to dramatic leads…and give 150 percent of myself to everything I do. Even standup comedy.”

While Wayans says he hopes “audiences” simply view him a “dope artist” that they want to go see and support, the Scary movie standout reveals that his personal aspirations are much higher.

“I want to be like the Prince of acting and comedy,” he says. “It’s like, ‘Hey, he’s on the drums. He did a spin, he’s dancing. He got three guitars in his hand. Oh, he’s playing bass now? And he’s singing the high notes and dancing?’ That’s the kind of performer I want to be.”

Respect, also starring Jennifer Hudson, is in theaters now. Marlon Wayans: You Know What It Is is now available on HBO Max.

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