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One Love's Kingsley Ben-Adir wanted to show "another side" to Bob Marley

Bob Marley: One Love actor Kingsley Ben-Adir has opened up about presenting "another side" to the reggae legend.

While promoting the new Bob Marley biopic, Ben-Adir spoke to Digital Spy about delving into the 'Three Little Birds' musician's vulnerability and "who he was as a man, as a father, his experience as a child".

"Getting to know him on a personal level was what the family wanted to do," he explained.

"They wanted to create a film about Bob where his fans could feel like they were on a journey with him and get to know him a little bit more internally, outside of the iconic status.

kingsley ben adir as bob marley, bob marley one love
CHIABELLA JAMES - Paramount

Related: Lashana Lynch wanted to avoid "strong Black women" trope in One Love

"I learnt everything about him through his friends and family, and a lot of the guys he grew up with when he was 13 or 14, I spent days with them and went to all the places he grew up. It was just listening. I had to listen and absorb.

Ben-Adir continued: "I think the movie is about his journey to peace and love and togetherness and universal unity, and getting to understand how those themes related to him on a personal level — so internal safety, self love and inner peace and where was Bob at with all of that at this time.

"The trauma of that attempted assassination, they all nearly died that night. To speak to people who were there and who remembered was really interesting to me.

"Out of that trauma came this incredible album [1977's Exodus] and the displacement of that intense emotion went straight in."

kingsley ben adir as bob marley, bob marley one love
CHIABELLA JAMES - Paramount

Related: First look at Peaky Blinders star Kingsley Ben-Adir as Bob Marley in new biopic

Ben-Adir, who has also appeared in Secret Invasion and The OA, then recalled what Marley's friends shared with him about that period in his life.

"Bob was a really kind, beautiful, soulful, wonderful human being who was a poet, but there was another side to him where he was tough and they called him The General. They called him the skip, and he was from the ghetto," he said.

"Trying to find all of that involved me really having to listen and understand that."

Director Reinaldo Marcus Green also revealed that he was "never interested in doing a cradle-to-grave" biopic.

"This film was supposed to be a celebration of Bob's life, and so what better time to start than in 1976 when there was an attempt on his life and what did he do?" Green explained. "He doubled down and created Exodus, one of the greatest albums of the 20th century."

Bob Marley: One Love is released in UK cinemas on February 12 and in US cinemas on February 14.

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