LOS ANGELES Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg may play roommates who work at a car wash in the upcoming comedy "The Wash," but their blue-collar characters are a lot like the superstar rappers themselves.
The film's writer and director, D.J. Pooh ("Friday," "3 Strikes"), drew inspiration for the roles by observing Dre and Snoop during last year's Up in Smoke tour.
"He was watching the difference in our dressing rooms Snoop's dressing room is always loud with a lot of people, and mine is pretty quiet, just me and my family kicking it," Dre said on the film's set last week. "He's like, 'This is perfect it's the odd couple.' That's just how the movie is."
While fans may see some similarities between Dre and Snoop and their characters, "The Wash" will testify to their fun side rather than the tough-guy personas most people are familiar with, Snoop said.
"The comedy is just me. People don't know that, 'cause when you think of Snoop Dogg you automatically think gangsta rap, so you put your own image on it. But where I'm from, in the ghetto, we always crack jokes. ... We have fun."
The film, which features a cameo by Eminem, is tentatively slated to hit theaters October 12. Dre and Snoop said working with longtime friend Pooh has made the experience less daunting.
"Me and Pooh go so far back," Dre said, "that I can remember times when he used to pick me up and take me to the studio when I didn't have a car back when we were working on Eazy-E and N.W.A records."
Though he stressed that making movies is a far cry from making music videos, Dre said he's getting so comfortable with acting that he's planning on spending more time in front of the camera.
"I've done some acting before, but I kind of sucked at it, if you want to be honest. I think I'm catching a knack for it. ... Before we started this movie, I was thinking about just doing this and going back to the studio. Now that I'm seeing that I could really be good at it, I'm gonna pursue it a little more."
But that doesn't mean Dre's studio projects are sidelined. In the coming months he plans to finish work on the debut album of his Aftermath imprint's female artist Truth Hurts and start recording veteran rapper Rakim's Oh My God. Dre won't start work on his own next solo album, which he said will be called Detox, until 2002.
He also has his hands in the score and soundtrack for "The Wash." Dre and Snoop originally planned to record the film's soundtrack as their reunion album, but the film's scheduled fall release made that goal unrealistic, Dre said. The two are now planning to record as many songs as possible together, with other artists filling out the rest of the soundtrack.
Meanwhile, Snoop has put together the soundtrack for the film "Bones," in which he co-stars with Pam Grier. The soundtrack features tracks by D12, Cypress Hill and Snoop's Tha Eastsidaz.
"The movie has certain scenes that needed music, so I just went in there and designed whole songs instead of just giving them snippets," he said.
And finally, in other Snoop movie news, the rapper also has a role in this summer's John Singleton film "Baby Boy." Snoop and Tyrese, who play rivals in the flick, also co-star in the soundtrack's lead single "Just a Baby Boy."