As the buzz surrounding the upcoming Tupac Shakur biopic continues to grow, SOHH recently reached out to Tupac Shakur: Thug Angel and Soulja Boy: The Movie director Peter Spirer for his reaction to 21-year-old rapper Soulja Boy wishes to portray the late rap mogul.
Having followed Pac’s career closely for 2002’s Thug Angel documentary, Spirer feels the late music icon’s shoes may be too big to fill.
“That’s a good question. Gosh, I don’t know. Soulja Boy, one thing about him, he constantly surprised me,” Spirer told SOHH referring to the filming of Soulja Boy: The Movie. “Any time I would doubt him, you know, things would just happen and he made things happen. I think the guy is one of those guys you really underestimate and he really comes through. When he’s focused and on it, he’s an amazing talent, he’s a very talented guy. To pull off a performance like 2Pac? That’s tough to say. I don’t know. I haven’t been happy with the portrayal of 2Pac in films so far. I just don’t know. I think a lot has to do with who is directing it, the people around him. It’s not just about if he can pull it off, but it’s about the whole production company telling that story. It’s a very difficult story to tell.” (SOHH)
The film director feels that most actors, not just the young rap phenom, will experience difficulty if granted the opportunity to portray Pac on the big screen.
“But can he do it? I would say Soulja Boy has as good a shot as anybody,” Spirer added. “That’s what I would say. I remember Anthony Mackie in Notorious and he’s a pretty good actor but I didn’t even know he was playing 2Pac. It was so weird. I was like, ‘Is he supposed to be 2Pac? This ain’t working.’ I don’t know. 2Pac is such an iconic and almost cult-like figure now, I tell you man, to even want to play that role you’re going to need a lot of confidence. That’s a tough one. If I was an actor, that’s one of the roles I would want to stay away from.” (SOHH)
Last summer, Soulja Boy said Pac’s mother, Afeni Shakur, motivated him to consider reading for the role.
“How that whole thing came about, I was doing the ‘Juice’ mixtape and that got out. I’m with William Morris Agency and they sent me an email, the subject was ‘Tupac,’ so I clicked on it,” Soulja Boy explained in an interview. “They were interested in having me for the role. I told them I was going to let them know. After that, I got this offer for this part for this movie called ‘Officer Down’ so I’ve been here in Connecticut [shooting]. I was on set with this actor Stephen Dorff and he was like, ‘Yeah man, you should do that [play Tupac].’ This is like really my first big movie, Lionsgate Films in theaters where people are going to see me acting. I was kind of hesitant [to audition for the Tupac film] but they told me that Tupac’s mom is on board with the movie. That was one of the things that I was like, ‘Hey, as long as his moms is cool with it I can consider it.'” (The Boom Box)
Last month, reports emerged online claiming lauded director John Singleton is now slated to spearhead the film.
Now a biopic is in the works about the rapper’s life and John Singleton, who was rumored to direct a film about N.W.A.‘s career last month, is now slated to direct the film. Singleton takes over for Antoine Fuqua, who left the project to work on Hunter Killer. The move makes sense considering Singleton directed Tupac in 1993’s Poetic Justice. No start date for production has been announced. (Paste Magazine)
Check out the Tupac Shakur: Thug Angel trailer below: