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The inherent problem with a biopic stems from the simple fact that accuracy is critical. A filmmaker can go wild with artistic liberties in a fictional story, but things get quite a bit dicier when they move into a story about real people who will see the film. That's an issue that Benny Boom's All Eyez on Me faces in its retelling of Tupac Shakur's life, and now it seems that actress Jada Pinkett Smith has some serious issues with the depiction of her relationship with the rap legend in the film. The actress tweeted.
Like I already said, making a biopic presents a filmmaker with the clear responsibility of portraying a real figure as accurately as possible. Based on what Jada Pinkett Smith has to say about the way she is shown in the film (portrayed by actress Kat Graham), it doesn't sound like the Gotham actress believes that the movie provided a fair representation of her dynamic with the late icon.
In fact, Jada Pinkett Smith even went so far as to describe the film's portrayal of her and Tupac Shakur as "hurtful." The actress continued:
With all of that said, Jada Pinkett Smith made sure to cap off her All Eyez on Me thread with the acknowledgment that none of this was the fault of the actors. In fact, she even praised the performances of Kat Graham and Demetrius Shipp Jr. for working with the material they ultimately received.
Jada Pinkett Smith's comments regarding the possible authenticity (or lack of authenticity) of All Eyez on Me has not gone unnoticed by people close to the film. In fact, producer L.T. Hutton has officially responded to the actress, noting that while the conversations between she and Tupac may not have happened word for word, the sentiment depicted between them is. The verdict is in, and Tupac deserved better.
Despite the producer's willingness to step up and defend the film, we should note that Jada Pinkett Smith is not the only one to show a certain amount of distaste for the story. Reviews for the biopic (including CInemaBlend's own review) have not been kind to it, and All Eyez on Me has become widely regarded as a wholly inadequate portrayal of this rap legend.
All Eyez on Me isn't the first rap biopic to cause a stir with the portrayal of principal characters. When Straight Outta Compton debuted in theaters back in 2015, F. Gary Gray's N.W.A. biopic similarly drew the ire of members of the rap community for its perceived inaccuracies, as well as the depiction of key figures -- such as Paul Giamatti's Jerry Heller. It's hard to tell where the truth lies in situations like these, but it's clear that All Eyez on Me represents yet another example of a musical biopic generating waves of controversy upon its theatrical release.
All Eyez on Me is now in theaters, and make sure to check out our handy 2017 movie premiere guide for more information related to the rest of the major film releases.