After recent talks of former “The Wire” star Michael K. Williams getting recruited to bring the late Ol’ Dirty Bastard‘s life story to the big screen surfaced this spring, the buzzing actor has finally opened up on the role.
Along with meeting the late ODB’s family, Williams admits how much attention to detail he has placed on the biopic.
“I am doing a lot of research on Russell,” Williams said referring to ODB by his government name. “I had the pleasure of meeting his beautiful mother, Ms. Cherry. We sat down for, like, three hours, and she told me the most amazing stuff about her son and a lot of things that the public didn’t know. I’ve been talking to people who know him well … people who knew him when the cameras weren’t rolling. I’ve got a lot of insight into who he was as a human being and as a man and, dare I say it, scholar. The dude was quite smart. You have to be able to recite mathematics and be 5 percent of god body — you can’t play with that. You have to know what you’re talking about. It’s a lot of studying, a lot of knowledge.” (MTV)
News of Williams landing the movie role hit the Internet in mid-March.
EW has learned exclusively that Williams, 45, will star in an upcoming film about the legendary Wu-Tang Clan rapper and all-around troubled soul Russell Jones, a.k.a. Ol’ Dirty Bastard, whose impressive mic skills and outrageous showmanship were eclipsed by his erratic offstage behavior, assorted arrests, and an early death. Joaquín Baca-Asay, the cinematographer on We Own the Night, Roger Dodger and Jay-Z‘s video for 99 Problems, is also joining the project, making his feature directorial debut. The movie is based on the final years of ODB’s life — a true story that is nonetheless stranger than fiction. (Entertainment Weekly)
Over the fall, Wu-Tang leader RZA spoke on comedians Eddie Griffin and Tracy Morgan squaring off to take on the role of ODB in a movie project.
“Eddie Griffin is down” he said. “Me and Eddie talked about it, laughed about it. Tracy Morgan, he wanna do it [too]. I said ‘Ya’ll both kinda can do it.” Asked who had an edge, the Wu-Tang Clan leader hinted at Griifin. “Eddie spent time with Dirty,” he shared. “They knew each other well.” The ODB movie has apparently been in the works for some time now, with Raeshawn, another cousin of the wild and crazy rapper, penning the script. “He’s been working on it for two years now,” RZA confirmed. “[In fact] I think Eddie’s already signed on with a letter of Intent–I signed on, of course. So you know [Raeshawn] got my blessin’ to make it happen.” (XXL Mag)
Back in 2010, the Wu’s Raekwon spoke to SOHH about his days around ODB.
“I think at the end of the day, all of the great times I had with him when he was alive, it was something about just being around him. One thing I can always say about ODB is he would give everybody around him drama, but when it came to me, it was different. I could be around him and tell him, “Yo, you’re wilding,” or “Yo, n*gga, you doing something that you’re not really supposed to be doing.” He always knew I was one of the individuals that was always gonna keep it funky with him. Me and him would laugh about it because he’d say, “Yo, Raekwon, I can’t even get at you but all them other n*ggas.” It wasn’t really so much the other n*ggas, but he would be able to put them out real quick and he never came at me like that, so, I would just say what was missing was the times.” (SOHH Guest Star)