In the wake of the massive success of the N.W.A. biopic Straight Outta Compton Universal, the studio behind “Compton,” is in the early stages of developing a pic about Def Jam Recordings, and they have their eyes on a couple of big names to star in the project.
Deadline reports that Universal is working to develop a movie based on the 2002 memoir of Def Jam co-founder Russell Simmons, Life and Def: Sex, Drugs, Money, + God.
Def Jam, home of artists such as Run DMC, LL Cool J, Public Enemy, and the Beastie Boys, was hugely influential in the early days of hip hop. Universal is hoping to cast Michael B. Jordan as Simmons and Jonah Hill as Def Jam co-founder Rick Rubin.
The film would chronicle Simmons’ and Rubin’s creation of the legendary hip hop label that defined rap in the 80s. The pic is expected to “explore how hip hop grew from an underground sensation into a dominant and pivotal voice of culture and change.”
Russell has expressed that he is flattered that Jordan is being considered to portray him in the pic, as Global Grind reports.
“The last time someone that handsome played me in a movie (in 1985’s Krush Groove) it ruined my life for ten years, because wherever I went, everyone was expecting Blair Underwood to show up. God only knows what the rest of my life will be like now that they are talking to someone as handsome as Michael B. Jordan.
I don’t know how they’re going to mess him up enough to play me. I’m especially excited about Jonah Hill playing Rick Rubin, but I can’t imagine who they could get to be (music exec) Lyor Cohen. When I look back on the story, there is a lot to tell and it involves a lot of talented people. It’s all very flattering.”