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Think you have mad rap skillz? Do you look a little bit like a young Ice Cube or a teenaged Dr. Dre? Than director F. Gary Gray might be able to use you for his N.W.A. biopic Straight Outta Compton, so het your headshot down to Hollywood, pronto.
Gray Tweeted the casting call for his Compton picture, seeking young talent (age 18-25) to play the members of the controversial yet groundbreaking L.A. rap group. Gray apparently is going with newcomers for the key roles, as the casting sheet says available parts include Eazy-E, Ice Cube, Dr. Dre, Yella and MC Ren. There’s a Gmail address on the sheet for people to send video auditions, so if you want to be considered, check it out.
Casting unknowns is the only way to go with a Compton movie. No one in the Hollywood system has what it takes to nail the roles of such volatile artists as Cube, Dre and Eazy. There was even a rumor at one point that the sons of the famous rappers would rise up to the challenge and play their fathers on screen. That could work, though nothing has come of that rumor to date.
These are career-defining roles for a young talent, though, and Gray’s making a very smart decision by going with newcomers instead of trying to force a recognizable young actor into a role just because they might help sell a ticket or two.
Gray has been circling this N.W.A. film for months. If casting is underway, pre-production and shooting can’t be too far off. We’ll keep you posted on details, but in the meantime, if you think you have what it takes to play a member of N.W.A. in their prime, audition. You’ve got nothing to lose.