Art

1.22.2015

What Happens When Rappers Become Actors

The latest hip-hop artist to join the rapper-turned-actor cannon is someone we’re very excited to see. With his first supporting role in Dope, a Sundance film by director Rick Famuyiwa, the Harlem bred A$AP Rocky is perfect for the film. It’s centered around kids in the hood, but not the one’s committing crimes and causing chaos, instead it’s about the ones trying to survive, the youths that love music, and of course, computers.

The “Pretty Flacko” has previously gotten his feet wet in other creative outlets besides music, mostly modeling for the likes of DKNY, Calvin Klein, and Salvatore Ferragamo. As he’s already been a hit in hip-hop and on the runway, we’re hopeful that he’ll kill it on screen as well. Now that you know how excited we are about A$AP Rocky’s foray into acting, we’ve created a list to get you pumped too. Check out a few of these top-notch rappers turned actors, and a few straight up disasters. You be the judge.

6. Mos Def

From his hilarious appearances on The Chappelle Show, to heist film The Italian Job, and his role as the bandleader on HBO’s rhymth fueled Lackawanna Blues, Mos Def’s acting career hasn’t been too shabby. But, here’s a little info most people don’t seem to know about Mos, he’s been acting since he was 14 years old! Young Mos Def starred in the TV film, Bless The Child, and also alongside the king of pop Michael Jackson in his video Ghost. Mos was even on The Cosby Mysteries, serving as (the now controversial) Bill Cosby’s sidekick.

5. Eve

Originally signed by Dr. Dre, Eve’s been a part of a number of jams, being most-well known for Ruff-Ryder’s ‘What Ya Want’, the top 40 track on Billboard’s top 100 back in 1999. With her badass golden corn-rolls and tough-chick attitude, Eve was hot shit back then and we love her for it. Eve deserves even more respect for the roles she’s played, and her ability to bring that rough Eve charm to movies such as xXx, and both Barbershop films. Liked Barbershop? Well, don’t worry cause Eve will be back again in Barbershop 3!

4. Ice-T

Question, how the hell did gangster rapper Ice-T land that Law & Order gig? The show is one of the longest running television crime series ever. It’s been on the air since 1999 and just keeps going, along with Ice-T who’s been on the show since 2000. His roles in music involved films like Breakin and Breakin 2 make a lot more sense, but Ice-T playing a detective? Talk about role reversal. Ice-T was actually cast on Law & Order via Dick Wolf, co-creator of the TV series New York Undercover’ where Ice-T played a drug dealer. Later the rapper played a pimp in another one of Wolf’s creations, and eventually Wolf brought Ice-T onto the Law & Order:SVU scene. Who’s on the other side of the bars now?

3. Ice-Cube

Yep, another rapper with Ice as his first name. N.W.A original, Ice-Cube has had a wacky film career. His best work would be his role in Boyz N The Hood hands down, followed by the classic comedy, Friday. Roles however in films such as “Are We There Yet?” where Ice-Cube plays a family man, can be questionable. Seeing Compton thugs fishing in canoes smiling like it’s easter Sunday can get a little weird. But, despite his focus on acting, Ice-Cube the rapper is still hanging around behind the scenes. His music continues to be featured in countless films, and he’s starred in nearly 40 flicks—and making more. Get it Ice-Cube!

2. Marky Mark

Arguably, shifting to Hollywood was probably the best choice for the beefy 90’s heartthrob Marky Mark and The Funky Bunch. That ‘Good Vibrations’ video? My oh my, did he look good, but apparently his rap career isn’t something Mark Wahlberg is too proud of. As for acting, well Mark Wahlberg is definitely going strong, with a series of Academy Award Nominations, as well as Emmy, Golden Globes, and Oscar nominations, Mark Wahlberg’s made a name for himself in Hollywood. Secretly though, we’d kind of love to see a Marky Mark comeback.

1. Queen Latifah

The bold and beautiful Queen Latifah pumped out some golden tracks back in the day such as ‘Just Another Day’ and ‘U.N.I.T.Y.’ She was smooth and had that classic 90’s flow that was chill and filled with beats from the hood. Her acting career though, has been super dope. She’s had 65 roles so far, and has produced 25 films and shows, making her title Queen one that is well deserved.

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