He wasn’t snitching like his longtime lyrical nemeses at Murder Inc. have accused him of doing, but last weekend 50 Cent did spend a lot of time cavorting with cops.
The platinum mixtape king was in L.A. filming videos for his next two singles, “21 Questions” and “Many Men (Wish Death).” One clip centers on his battles with the police, and the other features TV lawmen as guest stars.
According to a label spokesperson, in the clip for “21 Questions,” which was helmed by Dr. Dre and Phillip Atwell, 50 is spending some quality time with his girl at home when the authorities surround his house. He’s later carted off to federal prison where he has plenty of time to think about whether or not wifey will stick by his side now that the chips are down (“Girl … It’s easy to love me now/ Would you love me if I was down and out?/ Would you still have love for me?”).
Radio personality Fatman Scoop and the song’s hook singer, Nate Dogg, also appear in the video as inmates. Tyson Beckford plays the role of 50’s incarcerated adversary, who does everything from impose on the rapper’s phone time to attempt to hinder 50’s conjugal visits.
The video ends with a plot twist that has 50 clearly seeing his situation for what it is.
Unfortunately in “Many Men,” or at least in part of the video, 50’s vision is impaired. There’s blood in his eye and he can’t see, as the song’s lyrics go. Art imitates life as 50 is the victim of a hit. Gabriel Cassius (“Lockdown,” “New Jersey Drive”) and Mekhi Phifer (“8 Mile,” “Paid in Full”), act as hired guns who set out to collect a $50,000 bounty on his head.
Surviving the gunshot wounds, on his road to recovery 50 is surprised to find out that one of the many men who want him dead is actually a close friend. The Southside Queens native then rounds up his troops, which include G-Unit member Lloyd Banks and “Tiny Zeus” Lister, to exact revenge.
Henry Simmons of “NYPD Blue” and Adam Rodriguez and Rory Cochrane of “CSI Miami” also make guest-starring appearances. Jessy Terrero, who directed 50’s “In Da Club,” also called the shots on “Many Men.”
“Many Men” was shot mostly in downtown L.A., while the prison scenes in “21 Questions” were filmed at the closed Sybil Brand Institute Prison for Women.
Interscope said “21 Questions” will be the first of the two videos to be released, airing within the next two weeks. Meanwhile, 50 is putting out a DVD on April 15 called “The New Breed.” Songs “In the Hood,” “True Loyalty” and “8 More Miles” will be included, as well as concert footage and an interview with jailed G-Unit member Tony Yayo.