West Coast rap icon Ice-T is taking steps to expand his reach and influence in the entertainment world, by producing an upcoming documentary on the life of former pimp turned writer Iceberg Slim.
The Iceberg Slim documentary, which is projected to run about 80 minutes, comes as Ice-T branches out into film making.
It was during the recent writers strike that the rapper, along with his manager Jorge Hinojosa, decided to seriously pursue life behind the camera.
Thats my hero, Ice-T told AllHipHop.com. :Lets start right at the beginning. Because if it wasnt no Iceberg Slim, there wouldnt be no Ice-T.
Despite a number of other upcoming projects centering on Iceberg Slim, Ice-T was adamant about not playing the role of the man who influenced his career.
“I always felt it would be actually sacrilegious to truly try to play the man because were dealing with an icon,” Ice-T said. “When you play somebody that people know or think they know, its a dangerous move.”
Referenced in rhyme by numerous rappers ranging from Jay-Z to Ice Cube, Iceberg Slim found success as a best-selling author after years of working as a pimp.
The writer, who did time in prison for various offenses, died of liver failure one day before the Los Angeles riots on April 28, 1992.
With television shows and movies capitalizing on the publics fascination with infamous figures, the time couldnt be better to educate the public on Iceberg Slim, according to Ice-T, who feels that despite the notoriety, Iceberg Slim remains a mystery among people.
“Iceberg Slim is like Malcolm X. Its a name everybody knows, but no ones learned the history,” the rapper told AllHipHop.com. “Also, considering that this man is the number two black author in history behind Alex Haley. And Alex Haley had a m*****f****n movie. So this is some untold s**t.”
The film, which is currently in production, will feature archived photos and stories from those influenced by Iceberg Slim as well as reflections from those close to him such as his wife and publishers of his best-selling novels.
In addition to working behind the scenes as the documentarys producer, Ice-T will narrate the feature.
“It takes you through his whole life. Iceberg went through a lot of different things,” Ice-T explained. ”
He went from pimpin to door-to-door salesmen selling pesticides back to pimpin. He went to prison a few times. I mean its deep with how he deals with his mother.
To me the beauty of Iceberg Slim, what I got from him, was he didnt tell you the A side of the game. He taught you the B side of the game too. And that to me has always been important…So this will be a documentary to show the ups and downs and the back and forth of the game. Its gonna be incredible.”