The trailer for the Christopher “Biggie” Wallace biopic “Notorious” premiered on Yahoo! today. If MTV News hadn’t done a set visit several months back, if Derrick “D-Dot” Angeletti and Diddy hadn’t given me a personal co-sign of the film, and if the movie weren’t being spearheaded in part by Big’s managers Wayne Barrow and Mark Pitts, I might have been very nervous about pressing the play button today.
Big is my favorite rapper ever, and his life story shouldn’t get the Hollywood treatment. By that, I mean it shouldn’t have some sham of a story that focuses strictly on the glitz and glamour of the Notorious B.I.G.’s hip-hop life without depth. Let me rephrase that: essential depth.
In just one minute and 19 seconds, I was completely convinced that they got it right. I heard Big talk about wanting to live to be content with his wife and his kids as the trailer transitioned to “Hypnotize” and ended with “Notorious.” The film looks absolutely enticing. Every character looks like their real-life counterpart — except maybe Lil’ Kim.
But never mind the glimpses of the film — think about the music. Can you imagine how crazy it’s going to be in the theater watching this, hearing Big’s music in surround sound? I’m ready to buy my ticket right now. Midway through watching the trailer, I literally started yelling out loud, “Wheeeeeeeew. They did it!”
My big homie Sway came to my office a few hours later and watched the same trailer with me and my partner, senior producer Rahman Dukes. Swizzy started yelling too.
“Watching this trailer reminds me of the last interview I did with him, which happens to be the last interview he ever did,” Sway told me. “It took me right back to that time. It’s exciting to see, and it looks like these guys really captured his likeness — and hopefully they captured the magic that that whole era was a part of.
“I’m glad I was a part of Biggie’s history and success,” Sway added. “I’m glad I got a chance to do that last interview. Seeing that took me right back to ’97. I hope the movie serves a great purpose and shows the kids today what a great rapper truly is and truly was in the case of Biggie. I hope it shows where hip-hop could be in its finest moments. Musically, hip-hop expanded in that Biggie/Tupac era. The music was outstanding.”
What did you think of the trailer? Do you think “Notorious” will do Biggie justice?