NEW YORK — Right now, [artist id="1225081"]T.I.[/artist] is so hot, he can't be touched. He has a huge album, a potentially bigger tour, Grammy nominations, movie deals and a slew of companies willing to pony up his price to have him endorse their products.
A year ago, T.I. was so hot, he couldn't be touched. That's what corporations like GMC were thinking when they severed any ties they had with him in light of his arrest on felony gun charges. He lost millions in potential income.
Hundreds of hours of community service later, everyone — including Tip — is much more optimistic about his earning potential. His star power is even greater than it was before his trouble with the law. He may very well have to start serving time in jail come March, but it doesn't look like it will stop him from making moves.
"Presumably, while I'm there, I'll be able to strategize my comeback," Tip told MTV News last week. "All those days will be spent speaking to people who are interested in being in the T.I. business. Preparing myself for the days those doors open, when I put my feet back on the ground of the free world. It's just months of planning. It's just a long time to roll the project out. I ain't gonna just be sitting still doing nothing. The wheels will be turning, just the car ain't going nowhere."
While still able to move relatively freely, Tip is working. He's already begun recording his next album, there's the possibility of a tour, and he would like to sneak in a movie.
"The film I'm producing over at New Line, 'For Sale,' we're trying to put that together, and hopefully we'll be able to do that before March," he said. "We're getting offers every day, checking on our availability, on whether or not we'll be able to take advantage of certain opportunities, film-wise."
Paper Trail's follow-up has no release date, however. "I'm getting in when I can. Doing as much as can," he described of his time in the studio. "I don't have deadlines to meet. I don't have tight parameters to meet."
A luxury he can afford, because his current LP has legs. A video for "Dead and Gone" is next. [artist id="1231683"]Justin Timberlake[/artist], who sings on the record, will appear in the video.
"It will require both of our utmost abilities," he said of the clip. "Both of us will need to bring all we got, both performance-wise and maybe some acting."