Though I was never a huge fan of Tupac Shakur‘s music, I can’t help but appreciate his significance as one of the most compelling personalities and prolific rappers of my generation. On September 7, 1996—14 years ago today—he was the victim of a drive-by shooting outside of the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, moments after leaving a boxing match in which Mike Tyson controversially KO’d Bruce Seldon in the first round. Iron Mike’s victory—he became a WBA title holder—was overshadowed by Pac’s shooting and eventual death six days later.
In One Night in Vegas, director Reggie Rock Bythewood (cowriter of the 2009 Biggie Smalls biopic “Notorious”) recounts that fateful night through interviews with Tyson who recalls his kinship with the rapper. Tyson speaks about him with the homie Nekesa Mumbi Moody for the Associated Press here.
“Mike was the epitome of hip hop—hard core through and through. Tupac, one of hip hop’s greatest rappers, threw jabs with his tongue. Both of these cats grew up poverty-stricken. Like an endangered species, they fought to survive and in so doing, became icons.”
The documentary, another film in ESPN’s well-regarded 30 for 30 series, premieres tonight on the network. In the following trailers, Tyson talks about himself and other greats in the sport and the second clip gets an ill-advised spoken word treatment.
Plus, the good folks at Shadow and Act give an update on Antoine Fuqua’s forthcoming biopic Tupac. Morgan Creek Productions are on board, as are Oscar-nominated screenwriters Steven J. Rivele and Chris Wilkinson.
One Night in Vegas trailers: