We now know the three actors who will help comprise N.W.A. in Universal’s biopic of the famous and controversial gangsta rap group. Newcomers Corey Hawkins, O’Shea Jackson Jr., and Jason Mitchell will play Dr. Dre, Ice Cube, and Eazy-E, respectively. For Jackson Jr. it is a chance to play the younger version of his real-life father.
Ice Cube and Dr. Dre are involved as producers on the movie, which well tell the story of how five young men formed the group and revolutionized a culture with politically and racially charged songs about their lives growing up in Compton, CA. The film’s director is F. Gary Gray, whose first feature film back in 1995 was the Ice Cube comedy Friday. Over the years Gray has directed a number of music videos for Cube and other hip-hop artists, in between features like The Negotiator and The Italian Job. The last movie he directed was 2009’s Law Abiding Citizen. Cube of course remains ever-busy, currently starring in 22 Jump Street, and with several other projects on the horizon, including the recently announced Barbershop 3.
It appears Universal is very bullish on the commercial prospects for Straight Outta Compton, setting the release date for August 14th, 2015, at the height of the summer movie season.