The industry of rap music and movie may seem largely different. But over the years, many rappers have also played as actors.
Eminem, Tupac, Ice Baby, and Nelly are some famous names in the rap world that have taken a step into the movie industry.
Let's take a look at 10 rappers who have played in movies.
10. Eminem - 8 Mile
Eminem plays the role of Jimmy in his debut movie 8 Mile. The movie shows his friendships, struggles, and success.
Jimmy is an aspiring rapper from a poor family who tries to begin a career in hip hop. Going by the stage name B-Rabbit, he makes his way through Leaders of the Free World in rap battles.
The 2002 American drama film was directed and produced by Curtis Hanson. The movie received positive reviews and was ranked 2nd on Billboard's Top 10 Best Hip-Hop Movies Ever Made chart. It also won a total of 11 awards, including six awards for the single "Lose Yourself".
9. Tupac - Juice
"Juice" is a 1992 American crime thriller movie. It stars the rap king Tupac Shakur in the role of Ronald Bishop.
The movie focuses on Bishop and three other black youths who are being harassed by the police and a Puerto Rican gang. The plot takes a turn when Bishop starts a life of crime in order to escape suppression and earn respect.
It received positive reception and peaked at 17th position on US: Gold charts.
Tupac also later played in a number of movies like "Poetic Justice", "Menace II Society" and "Above The Rim". Moreover, after the rapper's murder in 1996, three more films starring him were also released.
8. Ice T - New Jack City
New Jack City is a crime action film based on an original story. It features Ice T in the role of Scotty Appleton.
Appleton is an undercover detective who tries to stop a rising drug kingpin named Nino Brown. In order to do so, he joins Nino's gang to work for him.
Directed by Mario Van Peebles, this movie was released in 1991 and had a box office of 47.6 million US dollars. It also stars actors Wesley Snipes, Chris Rock and Judd Nelson.
The movie was nominated for American Film Institute's Top 10 Gangster Films. The soundtrack to the movie also peaked at 2nd position in US: Platinum Charts.
7. Ice Cube - Friday
Ice Cube is the co-writer and star of the 1995 buddy comedy movie "Friday". The movie revolves around the hilarious lives of two unemployed friends.
O'Shea Jackson Sr., also known by the name Ice Cube plays the role of Craig Jones, a slacker. Together with his friend Smokey, they try to escape from a local drug dealer.
"Friday" debuted 2nd at the box office in the opening weekend. Ever since its release, it has received a big cult following. The internet meme, "Bye, Felicia" is derived from a scene in the film.
The movie is the first in the Friday Trilogy, with two sequels "Next Friday" and "Friday After Next". It also inspired an animated series that was released in 2007.
6. Kid N' Play - House Party
The 1990 American comedy "House Party" features the rapper duo Kid N' Play. The story is about the wildest nights of their lives at a house party.
In the movie, the hip-hop duo of Christopher Reid ("Kid") and Christopher Martin ("Play") have a party at Play's house while his parents are out on a vacation. The story is full of ups and downs and has some hilarious scenes.
The movie was liked by many, appreciating its exuberance and receiving a 94% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Many sequels to the original movie were later released, with the most recent remake being released on January 2023.
5. Andre 3000 - Four Brothers
Rapper André 3000 is cast as Jeremiah Mercer in the movie "Four Brothers". This action film shows him in a state of vengeance and anger.
Jeremiah, who appears as a construction worker seeks to investigate and avenge the murder of his mother, along with his three other adopted brothers. The four brothers realize the suspicious activities of one of the brothers on the journey.
Directed by John Singleton, the movie earned a box office of 92.5 million US dollars. It received mixed reviews, with some appreciating its strong and ruthless action, while others feeling the violence went a bit too far.
4. Nelly - The Longest Yard
"The Longest Yard" stars rapper Nelly in the role of Earl Megget. This 2005 sports comedy film is a remake of the 1974 film of the same name.
The movie shows the story of a former professional NFL quarterback who gets himself in prison because of match fixing. In order to reduce his sentence, he attempts to build a team of prison inmates in order to challenge the team of prison guards in a game of football.
Popular actors Adam Sandler, Burt Reynolds, and Chris Rock also feature in this film. The movie did well, earning a huge box office of 191.5 million US dollars.
3. Queen Latifah - Set It Off
Female rapper Queen Latifah stars in the film "Set It Off". The 1996 crime action film is about four close friends who plan a bank robbery.
Stony, Cleo, Frankie and T.T. are four broke women who are in dire need of money. So, they plan on robbing a bank. But as the women begin to loot, they start mistrusting each other and things get wrong very quickly.
Set It Off grossed 41.6 million $, and the director of the film F. Gary Gray won an award for Best Director at the Acapulco Black Film Festival 1997. The soundtrack also reached number four on US: Platinum charts.
2. Snoop Dogg - Baby Boy
Snoop Dogg plays the role of Rodney in the 2001 comedy-drama movie Baby Boy. The film shows a struggling 20-year-old teenager in the hood of Los Angeles.
The main character of the movie is Jody, an unemployed man. Even though he has a child and a wife, he lives with his mother. The legendary rapper Snoop Dogg plays a character who is the ex-boyfriend of this man's wife in the movie.
Initially, in the movie, the role of Jody was written to be played by Tupac, but after his murder, R&B artist Tyrese Gibson got the role.
Upon its release, the movie ranked fifth at the box office, earning 29.3 million US $. Baby Boy received average reviews, with comments like "heartfelt", "repetitive" and "compelling".
1. Common - Just Wright
"Just Wright" is a romantic comedy film featuring the American rapper Common. The movie also stars Queen Latifah in the lead role alongside Common.
It shows the relationship between Leslie, a physical therapist, and Scott, a professional basketball player. Leslie falls in love with Scott when she takes care of him during his recovery from PCL tear.
However, problems arise when Leslie's god-sister Morgan is forced to spend more time with Scott.
Despite receiving mixed reviews, the movie was nominated ten times and also won Outstanding Writing in a Motion Picture (Theatrical or Television) at NAACP Image Award in 2011.