It's been 20 years since we said goodbye to the charismatic rapper, poet, and artist known as Tupac Shakur. His legions of loyal fans have been waiting ever-so patiently for the release of his biopic All Eyez On Me since the project was announced back in 2011. The good news is that the film has secured distribution and is now scheduled for release on June 16, the fallen rapper's birthday.
The movie chronicles his meteoric rise to fame while offering a closer look at the conflicts Tupac faced including his imprisonment, his relationship with Biggie, and the controversy he faced while signed to Death Row Records. We will also get some insights into how his mother, Afeni Shakur, and friend, Jada Pinkett Smith, impacted his life.
The cast features a balanced mix of newcomers, up-and-comers, and acting veterans. Newbie Demetrius Shipp, Jr. plays the lead role as Pac. He is joined by Danai Gurira (The Walking Dead) as Afeni Shakur, Kat Graham (The Vampire Diaries) as Jada Pinkett, Dominic Santana (Mr. Right) as Shug Knight, Jamal Woolard (Notorious) reprising his role as Biggie Smalls, Keith Robinson (Dreamgirls) as Atron Gregory, Laura Cohan (The Walking Dead) as Leila Steinberg, and Hill Harper (CSI: NY) as the journalist. Check out the official trailer:
Changes in key personnel and legal battles have been the main reasons why we have waited so long to get this film. Directors Antoine Fuqua and John Singleton both left the project before Benny Boom signed on to finish the job. A $10 million lawsuit filed in October 2015 is still an ongoing headache, but the new deal with Lionsgate's Summit Entertainment has made it possible for the project to move forward.
This will be a big year for the rapper's legacy. Tupac will be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame on April 7. He left this world too soon at the age of 25, but managed to sell over 75 million records worldwide with All Eyez On Me accounting for 10 million of those.
Many of the early reviews are positive and it seems like the end product will be well worth the wait. After a screening last summer, The Game declared, "The Tupac movie is the real deal, sh*t make that Biggie movie look like a cartoon. I don't mean no...ay...that's what it is, Homie." See you June 16.