50 Cent's new act: Get Rich or Die Tryin'

by Beacon Staff • November 2, 2005

But, the fact that you can find his songs in da clubs from Los Angeles to Miami is not enough for Jackson.,"Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson is on the cusp of owning the rap game. His latest album, The Massacre, entered the charts twice this year at number one (once as a special edition) and is currently the best selling record of 2005.

But, the fact that you can find his songs in da clubs from Los Angeles to Miami is not enough for Jackson. He recently published his autobiography, From Pieces to Weight, and later this month Vivendi Universal is releasing 50 Cent: Bulletproof, a video game featuring the rapper as the main character.

As if that were not enough, this Wednesday brings Get Rich or Die Tryin', a feature film opening nationwide, which is loosely based on Jackson's life story. Is there anything "Fitty" cannot do?

"What truly makes me happy is setting goals and accomplishing them," Jackson said in a recent phone interview with The Beacon.

Whether or not Jackson can successfully transition from rapper to media mogul remains to be seen, but the buzz around Get Rich suggests it could happen.

In the film, Jackson plays Marcus, an ambitious rapper who turns to street crime after the loss of his mother.

The movie, which co-stars Terrence Howard (Crash) and Joy Bryant (Honey), marks Jackson's big-screen debut, and he said moving from rapping to acting was difficult, despite playing a character based on himself.

"You can come in happy the day you [are] supposed to be sad as a character," he said. Jackson noted that he had to "display different emotions on cue," and that it was "difficult to get out of those spaces" the more dramatic scenes required him to relive.

Jackson also had to get used to shooting the film out of sequence, as opposed to songwriting, where he sets everything in the order of first verse, then chorus, and so on.

Get Rich was directed by six-time Oscar nominee Jim Sheridan, who is best known for his depictions of Irish life, including In the Name of the Father and In America.

Although the director may not seem like the person to tell Jackson's story, the rapper said Sheridan was his first choice.

"His films are so critically- acclaimed," Jackson said, citing examples like My Left Foot and The Boxer as "great." These movies convinced the rapper to willingly hand over the creative reins to the director.

"I'd be an idiot [to] teach Jim Sheridan how to make a film," he said. Jackson said that he is proud of the results and hopes others will be as well.

"After people see the film, they're going to view me different[ly]," he said.

Many have compared Get Rich to Eminem's similarly-themed 8 Mile, which is a comparison that Jackson welcomes because the former's movie debut was "such a success."

Yet, it seems that no matter how popular he gets, Jackson is always surrounded by controversy. The latest beef involves prominently placed billboards for Get Rich, which feature the rapper with a gun in one hand and a microphone in the other.

Although detractors say the ads, some of which have been recently removed, promote firearm violence, Jackson has a different take.

"The photographs show you I'm a protector," he said. "Like [I'll] do whatever it takes."

Although many naysayers worry about children being exposed to images like these, Jackson said that he lets his young son, Marquise, listen to his music and watch his videos. Both contain explicit material, but Jackson feels it is impossible to totally shelter his son from it.

"People put kids in danger more if they don't allow them to see those things," he said.

Jackson said that Marquise is the most important thing to him and is the reason he started rapping.

"My son came into the picture, he changed my life, became my priority, [and I] had to provide for him," he said. Jackson said that his life is constantly changing, and that he tries to adjust to everything the same way.

"I might not be 100 percent comfortable being in the space that I'm in, but I adapt to it," he said. "You make a decision on how you wanna live your life ... [and] I'd rather life my life the way I want to ... than be moved around."

","Bryan O'Toole"

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