After a long delay, John Singleton is set to direct a much-anticipated biopic (currently untitled) about celebrated rapper Tupac Shakur, a movie that has seemed to be on the horizon since his death at age 25 in Las Vegas on September 13, 1996 from a drive by shooting.
Antoine Fuqua, the director of Training Day, had previously been attached to the project, but left after struggles ironing out the details, namely an actor to play Tupac. Singleton had a strong working connection to Shakur during his life and had been in talks prior to Fuqua’s attachment. Singleton wrote and directed Poetic Justice, which starred Shakur alongside Janet Jackson, in 1993. Projects since then have included Abduction, Four Brothers, and 2 Fast 2 Furious. “Tupac was the guy who I planned to do a lifetime of films with,” Singleton told Variety, which broke the story.
Among the issues which have sidelined the project to this point was a life rights conflict between Morgan Creek and Shakur’s mother, Afeni Shakur. This has been resolved, and Afeni Shakur is now on the project in an executive producer role. With both Afeni and Singleton on board, fans have reason to hope for an incisive and revelatory addition to the public record on Tupac. There’s no word yet on who will play Tupac, but if all goes well from this point, production for this biopic will begin in June.