By Jayson Rodriguez
It took nearly 12 years after the tragic shooting death of the Notorious B.I.G. to bring the larger-than-life rapper’s story to the big screen. But now, as the release date of “Notorious” is creeping up upon us, the lobbying for which rapper’s life should next be lionized in film has begun. Derek Luke — who portrays Sean “Puffy” Combs in “Notorious” — naturally says it should be Diddy. And it shouldn’t be any surprise that Anthony Mackie, who plays Tupac in the same film, thinks the Thug Life icon should get a movie of his own.
Well, we here at MTV News have our own suggestions.
Since Luke and Mackie have already had their say, we’re gonna skip those picks, for obvious reasons. And apologies to Hammer (“Too Legit: The MC Hammer Story”), Eminem (“8 Mile”), 50 Cent (“Get Rich or Die Tryin'”) and even Russell Simmons (“Krush Groove”), but you guys can’t be on the list since you’ve already told your stories. But we also wanna hear from you on this topic, so, after the jump, join the conversation and weigh in.
Jay-Z: Like Biggie, Jay’s story is a story about Brooklyn — Marcy Projects, to be exact. So it’s about the streets — and by extension, the people — that paved the way for Jay to become the man he is today. And let’s not forget his VH1 “Driven” special was filled with as many twists and turns as the curves on Meagan Good’s body. Sounds like a no-brainer to us, and even more so after Hov scrapped his “Black Book” memoirs a few years back. Suggestion: Cast Idris Elba to play Jay.
Eazy-E: He was a mogul before anyone in hip-hop really even knew what it meant to be one, from launching N.W.A into hip-hop superstardom to signing Bone Thugs-n-Harmony to fathering enough kids to take up a full row of seats in the L.A. Coliseum. How chilling would it be to see a scene of estranged friends Eazy and Dr. Dre’s last conversation before the pint-size gangster rapper passed away from an AIDS-related illness? Suggestion: Use Jerry Heller’s book “Ruthless” as the starting point for the screenplay.
(See the rest of our list and share yours, after the jump!)
Run-DMC: They were the Beatles of rap, paving the way for generations of MCs. They were the pioneers, achieving many firsts in hip-hop, from landing on the cover of Rolling Stone to scoring an endorsement deal with Adidas. But little is known about Run, D, and Jam Master Jay’s lives after their glory days. Sure, there’s “Run’s House,” but watching the Kings of Queens go from superstars to super dads, husbands and CEOs — and then transition to elder statesmen as they coped with Jay’s tragic death — would be a sobering reality check for those with Cristal dreams. (It’s not always bottle poppin’.) Suggestion: Call Bill Adler (the original Run-DMC biographer) to work on the script, along with input from Russell Simmons, Lyor Cohen and Rick Rubin.
LL Cool J: He still looks young enough to star as himself, for one, and, for flashback scenes, there’s always his teenage son, who filled in for Todd Smith in the “Hush” video. And if you think (SPOILER ALERT) the scenes with Lil’ Kim in “Notorious” were hot (hot, hot…), imagine the parental-advisory chapter of LL’s book, “Make My Own Rules,” brought to life. Suggestion: Somehow find a way to cast Melyssa Ford, or Angel “Lola Luv” Fershgenet, or … You get the point. (Laugh and lick lips here.)
Scarface: OK, so he might not have the mass appeal of some of his more well-known contemporaries, but, if his lyrics are to be believed, ‘Face has lived a life that only a few men walking this Earth could ever survive. And the story arc would be the stuff that makes film auteurs drool: a detached, dark, unbalanced youth overcomes adversity to transform into an introspective, grizzled, respected elder. Green-light this one, even if it’d be a Starz debut only. Suggestions: Have Clint Eastwood executive produce this project.
Who do YOU think deserves a biopic? Vote in the poll!