Back in the day, “Krush Groove”, was the quintessential hip-hop flick. It was released through Warner Brothers studios in 1985, one year after the success of Prince’s “Purple Rain”, and starred his then protégé and companion Sheila E. Although rap and the culture of hip-hop, are rooted in advocating anti-establishment values and not “selling out”, ever since “Boyz N’ the Hood”, it’s been all about cashing in.
Public Enemy addressed the initial seduction of Hollywood, that ironically featured Ice Cube, who today is immersed in the business of film and television by way of CubeVision.
After “Boyz N’ the Hood”, came Will Smith’s “Independence Day”. Although Smith had appeared in movies prior to that, “ID4” set off his run of summer blockbusters. Six male emcees, that have taken on the persona of Hollywood celebrities, include: Cube, Smith, Common, Ludacris, LL Cool J and T.I. …
The most popular female in hip-hop, that graces the silver screen is actually the only emcee, ala Queen Latifah. Other popular female performers that have gotten involved in motion pictures, are very much of hip-hop culture, but they don’t rap. Among them: Beyonce, Alicia Keys, Erykah Badu and Jill Scott…
Two of which high expectations were anticipated, from the world of hip-hop, were Tupac and Aaliyah. Although their contributions were few, they made an impact, and both were leaders that were loved.
Two that are just getting their feet wet, now adding film credits to their resumes, are Kanye West and Nicki Minaj. West is expected to have music in Spike Lee’s “Chiraq”, earlier reports, had him starring in the film with Common. His feature film debut was as an MTV host in “Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues”. Next up for “Yeezy” are the movies “X-Mas” and “Zoolander 2”. For more on “Chiraq”… http://www.avclub.com/article/actually-kanye-west-wont-star-spike-lees-chiraq-219466 Minaj made her debut in the animated film, “Ice Age: Continental Drift”, recently appeared in the comedy “The Other Woman”, and has been cast in Cube’s “Barbershop 3”.
Joints steeped in hip-hop culture or starred rappers through the 90’s were ‘Boyz’; “Menace II Society”, noted for an incredible soundtrack; “Belly”, which starred NAS and DMX; and “Above the Rim”, depicting Tupac in “Thug Life” mode for the second time, the first being in the flick “Juice” with Omar Epps.
In 2000 there was the essential “Swan Song”, for the rap duo OutKast, with their movie “Idlewild”. Another project is expected from the boys from ATL, but as to when, is like trying to anticipate Dr. Dre’s long-awaited “Detox” release.
Deadline Hollywood broke the story on the forthcoming RZA directed “Coco”, that stars Azealia Banks as the title character, along with Scott and Common. This is RZA’s second direction, following his debut “The Man with the Iron Fists”, and a string of acting and soundtrack contributions.
“Coco” is in post-production. The next flick to hit theaters steeped in hip-hop, is “Straight Outta Compton”, based on the evolution of the careers of the members of N.W.A. Cube Vision is a producer of the film, that features Paul Giamatti as “Jerry Heller”, and Cube’s son O’Shea Jackson Jr. as “Ice Cube”.
Ice Cube’s masterpiece “Amerikkka’s Most Wanted”, dropped 25 years ago, here are links with O’Shea Jackson… http://icecube.com
Deadline’s “Coco” story… http://deadline.com/2015/05/azealia-banks-rza-coco-lionsgate-code-black-film-debut-1201433055/
Source for most photos and some info.: IMDb… http://m.imdb.com/?ref_=m_nv_home
for the love of HIP-HOP and FUNKY films