O’Shea Jackson Jr., Corey Hawkins and Jason Mitchell have all been confirmed to play members of the N.W.A in a long-awaited biopic of the rap group, as Ice Cube, Dr. Dre and Easy-E respectively.
The film, which is called Straight Outta Compton, has finally been given the go ahead by Cube and Dre as well as Tomica Wrighrt, E’s widow, after the idea first surfaced five years ago.
So who are the trio who will try to capture arguably the most exciting moment in hiphop history by playing the genre’s most uncompromising – and as they said at the time, ‘dangerous’ – group?
Well, O’Shea Jackson Jr. is Cube’s 24-year-old son who, in a gift for armchair psychologist the world over, will be playing his own teenage Father. Hawkins is a relative unknown who biggest credits to date were this year’s Non-Stop and Iron Man 3 (he’s also tread the boards opposite Orlando Bloom as Tybalt in Romeo and Juliet). Mitchell, who plays the late ‘The Godfather of Gangster Rap’ Eazy-E, is best known for Contraband (2012) and Broken City (2013).
In the director’s chair is F. Gary Gray (Friday, Set If Off, The Italian Job) and Cube and Dre will serve as producers.
Speaking to MTV News, Cube said: “We just tryin’ to tell the story of the world’s most dangerous group. We’re trying to tell aspects of our lives that people don’t know about, people aren’t privy to.”
Presumably that means the action will focus on their rise through the mean streets of Compton, and stop before their latter years as stars of films such as this year’s cop comedy Ride Along.
All the signs are that Straight Outta Compton will be a self-mythologizing tale of guns, crime and the making of what is still arguably the greatest rap album of all time. We can’t wait.