Chiraq hits theaters this weekend and the dynamic leads are none other than entertainment mogul, Nick Cannon and rising star and fashionista, Teyonnah Parris. I sat down with them to discuss their roles in the controversial film and their thoughts on Hip Hop and Spike Lee. One things certain, whether you like this film or not, you will appreciate the performances of Parris and Cannon.
Nick Cannon is no stranger to hip hop music. The mogul is the owner and CEO of NCredible records and although he hasn’t put out any hardcore rap music, he did a great job of portraying a gangsta rapper. I asked Cannon if he would sign his character to NCredible records and he responded by saying he would only sign him once he was reformed from the “Thug Life” and had something important to say.
“It’s interesting when you think about where Hip Hop is today, because I feel like we’ve taken the message out of Hip Hop. We’ve taken the power out of Hip Hop in a lot of ways, because there’s some songs out there that ain’t even got words in it! It’s just hmm na hmmm na hmmm na! But, we cam up in the days when I was and still am a huge fan of Public Enemy and NWA, like, they were saying something. And whether it’s this film , or even like this movement. Even like, Tupac! I just want to hear people say something again. And it’s a lot of young cats out there doing it, I just wish there were more. Obviously we have the Coles and the Kendricks, but the ones that are really in the community, and theres people in the Southside of Chicago. A lot of the brothers that helped me put together the music for this film were brothers that are disenfranchised, but they’re speaking up and they got a lot to say so I’m excited for that.”
Teyonnah Parris spoke about her powerful character and realizing that Spike Lee intentionally chose to have the hero of the film be a dark skinned women with natural hair.
“Just being a part of Spikes vision and it’s so heightened and theatrical in a way, it was really exciting to be that strong, powerful sister in the hood who can affect change and get people to mobilize behind her to make a difference. And to be celebrated and for Spike to know that you’re chocolate and you have natural hair and you’re going to be the heroine of this movie, that’s not by coincidence and he knew exactly what he was doing.”
Chiraq is in theaters now! Please support this film.
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