Ahead of the release of the anticipated Tupac biopic All Eyez on Me, The Shakur Estate has announced that a fully authorized documentary on the iconic rapper’s life will be directed by Steve McQueen (12 Years a Slave). As first reported by Deadline, McQueen will produce with Jayson Jackson (What Happened, Miss Simone?) and musical documentary mogul Nigel Sinclair. The project marks McQueen’s first feature-length documentary and will be made on the heels of his anticipated 12 Years a Slave follow-up, Widows, starring Viola Davis. The film will trace Tupac’s life and explore his legacy in music and American culture.
“I am extremely moved and excited to be exploring the life and times of this legendary artist. I attended NYU film school in 1993 and can remember the unfolding hip-hop world and mine overlapping with Tupac’s through a mutual friend in a small way,” McQueen said. “Few, if any shined brighter than Tupac Shakur. I look forward to working closely with his family to tell the unvarnished story of this talented man.”
Tom Whalley, Shakur estate trustee, made the official announcement and chimed in with a statement of his own:
Tupac’s timeless message resonates today as strongly as it did when I first discovered him in 1990, possibly more so. His legacy is unfortunately seen now through the refraction of the headlines, the controversy, and the tragic way his life ended. With this film, we will show the artist and the young man who existed beyond the news. I have an obligation to both Tupac and Afeni Shakur, to make sure this project becomes realized. In the final year of her life, Afeni and I spoke often of her desire to have her son’s true story be told. We are very excited to be working with the talents of Steve McQueen, Jayson Jackson and Nigel Sinclair. Together, with the team we have assembled, I am honored to have the opportunity to bring the documentary Tupac started in 1996 to life.