Universal Pictures has announced the release date of the controversial rap group N.W.A. biopic, Straight Outta Compton, and its first cast photo.
The film, directed by F. Gary Gray (Friday, Set It Off), is being produced by original N.W.A. members Ice Cube and Dr. Dre, and Eazy E’s widow Tomica Woods-Wright. Will Packer serves as executive producer.
Ice Cube’s son, O’Shea Jackson, Jr., will play the young version of his father after the famous rapper lobbied to Universal executives for the role despite his lack of acting experience. Producers still auditioned seasoned actors and rappers for the part, but Jackson proved he could handle the pressure and was up for the challenge. Rounding out the cast is Corey Hawkins as the young Dr. Dre and Jason Mitchell as Eazy-E.
Ice Cube describes the film as a comprehensive “dramatic story that encompasses hip-hop, dope-dealing, Reaganomics, AIDS, LAPD, rap feuds, FBI, PMRC, the Parental Advisory stickers on the records… all of it.”
Universal has also released a synopsis of the film:
“In the mid-1980s, the streets of Compton, California, were some of the most dangerous in the country. When five young men translated their experiences growing up into brutally honest music that rebelled against abusive authority, they gave an explosive voice to a silenced generation. Following the meteoric rise and fall of N.W.A., Straight Outta Compton tells the astonishing story of how these youngsters revolutionized music and pop culture forever the moment they told the world the truth about life in the hood and ignited a cultural war.”
Straight Outta Compton hits theaters on August 14, 2015.