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‘This is a brilliant opportunity to bring together the revolutionaries and the gang communities. And you can unite them.” So a young Tupac Shakur is told in the first trailer for All Eyez On Me, Lionsgate’s biopic starring newcomer Demetrius Shipp Jr. as the groundbreaking and ground-shaking rapper — and actor, poet and activist — who was killed in 1996 while at the top of his game. He was 25.
“We love your music, Tupac,” the LA record exec says. “You paint a picture for the listener that’s not always pretty, but it’s real.” That, and there’s a 4,000-page FBI file on him. The film follows his rise from the streets of NYC to the shores of SoCal to the top of the charts as the crown jewel of Death Row Records, run by Suge Knight (Dominic L. Santana), who tells him, “A lot of people are born males, but they’re not men. I’m a man.” Then there’s the storied East Coast-West Coast rap war.
Kat Graham, Lauren Cohan, Hill Harper, Jamal Woolard, Danai Gurira and Annie Ilonzeh co-star in the film from director Benny Boom. Jeremy Haft & Eddie Gonzalez and Steven Bagatourian penned the script. Named after his mega-selling 1996 album, All Eyez on Me will close the American Black Film Festival two days after Lionsgate’s Summit Entertainment opens the film from Morgan Creek on June 16.
Check out the trailer above and tell us what you think.