SOHH Whatcha Think: Which Hip-Hop Legend's Life Should Be Told On Film Next? [Click Here & Speak]
Tuesday, Jun 28, 2011 12:15AM
Like a family inheritance, artists sometimes leave behind a wealth of music for their audience after their death. Icons like Tupac Shakur and Bob Marley have been quoted, mixed and remixed into eternity; even The King of Pop experienced a resurrection through the top-selling dance game "Michael Jackson: The Experience".
But eventually, the music stops. The artists' stash of unused material (sometimes throwaway recordings, other times unfinished work) has been plundered, and instead of taking time to mourn, then respectfully moving forward - we do the opposite - we go backward, this time, demanding the story that inspired the art: The life story.
[Editor's Note: The views expressed in this column do not necessarily reflect those of SOHH.com]
Sure, you can listen to "Things Done Changed" , "Juicy" and "My Downfall" and walk away having a pretty good grasp of the life of Christopher Wallace. But fans want more. We wanted to see Wallace become The Notorious B.I.G; just as we desire to see Lesane Parish Crooks become Tupac Shakur (whose life story along with that of the Black Mafia Family has been acquired by the same production company) and later, Makaveli.
Here are a few I'd like to see.
Jam-Master Jay (January 21, 1965 - October 30, 2002)
Part of the legendry group Run D.M.C. , Jam-Master Jay was shot and killed nearly ten years ago. His influence on fashion, musical style and role in helping hip-hop break down cultural barriers makes the JMJ story one worth telling. Darrin Henson's come a long way since his "Dance Grooves" DVDs. I think he could pull it off.
Aaliyah (January 16, 1979 - August 25, 2001)
Aaliyah was no rapper, but her work with artists like DMX, Missy and Timbaland made her family. A film capturing the singer's short but powerful career would definitely be embraced. My pick for the lead? Avatar co-star Zoe Saldana.
Eazy E (September 7, 1963 - March 26, 1995)
He is considered one of the founder's of West Coast gangsta rap. He hung at the White House with George Bush. He discovered Bone Thugs N' Harmony. He beefed (then reconciled) with Dr. Dre. How is man's life not a movie yet? Let's hope Ice Cube can get the proposed N.W.A movie off the ground, because curl for curl, De'Aundre Bonds (b.k.a. Stacey, Alicia's big brother in the flick The Wood) can nail the part, easy.
J Dilla (February 7, 1974 - February 10, 2006)
Much of Dilla's popularity came after his death, which makes his life story that much more interesting. While copping the Donuts LP and rocking a "Dilla Saved My Life" tee is cool, learning the story behind the man and why so many artists rep for him years after his return to the essence is the ultimate sign of respect. I almost went with Mos Def for the lead, but Michael K. Williams seems a better fit.
SOHH Whatcha think? Who is the next musical icon that should have their life told on film - and who should play them?
Cube, I'm counting on you.
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[Editor's Note: The views expressed in this column do not necessarily reflect those of SOHH]