[The year 1992 was a solid one when it came to strong portrayals of African-American men on the big screen. In honor of the 25th anniversary Blu-ray DVD release of the groundbreaking film Juice, let’s look back to a golden era in black film that propelled many of our favorites to stardom.]
1. Tupac Shakur in Juice
Tupac Shakur made his first big screen debut in the January 1992 film, Juice. Starring alongside Omar Epps, Khalil Kain and Jermaine Hopkins, this film definitely was one for the culture and had an amazing roster full of young talent. Director Ernest Dickerson notes that the creators behind the film were aware of the increasing gun violence among young African-American teens and wanted to create a story aimed at tackling the issue.
2. Kid ‘n Play in Class Act
Christopher Reid and Christopher Martin, most famously known as the rap duo Kid ‘n Play, kicked off the summer of 1992 with the film Class Act. Reid played Duncan Pinderhughes, a nerdy straight-A student with no social life, and Martin starred as tough bad boy Blade Brown. After their school records get swapped, the two begin to enjoy their new personas but quickly realize their new lives aren’t what they thought. In an interview on the New York morning radio show The Breakfast Club, Kid ‘n Play stated that Class Act is the film where they mostly play characters that are close to how they are in real life.
3. Eddie Murphy in Boomerang
Eddie Murphy hit the big screen in the summer of 1992 as a womanizer whose lifestyle choices begin to backfire on him. Murphy shared the screen with top names like Chris Rock, Martin Lawrence, Halle Berry and Robin Givens. Like the movie, the Boomerang soundtrack featured some of the biggest names in music during the 90s and was produced by Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds.
4. Damon Wayans in Mo’ Money
The big screen was full of laughs in ‘92 with Damon Wayans and the cast of Mo’ Money following Eddie Murphy’s Boomerang. Wayans starred as a con-artist aiming to get on the right track where he shared the screen with his brother Marlon Wayans. The film was considered a success at the box office, bringing in almost triple the cost of what it took to make the movie.
5. Denzel Washington in Malcolm X
The biographical portrayal of the of influential leader Malcolm X was released November 18, 1992. The film was written by Spike Lee and bought attention to landmark talent like Angela Bassett and Wendell Pierce. Denzel Washington was lauded for his portrayal as Malcolm X and was nominated for an Academy Award in the Best Actor category.