'The Wire' actor Michael K. Williams to play Ol' Dirty Bastard in new biopic
The acclaimed TV actor is set to take on the role of the late rapper, who died of a drug overdose in 2004, in "Dirty White Boy", a new biopic that will center on the rise of Jarred Weisfeld, a former VH1 intern who sold his idea for a TV show to ODB as a young man and later went on to become the hip-hop star's manager.
Brent Hoff wrote the screenplay for the film, which will serve as the feature directorial debut of Joaquin Baca-Asay, a cinematographer and commercial/music video director who has worked with filmmakers including Mike Mills, James Gray and Dylan Kidd in the course of his career.
The project is being produced by Lars Knudsen and Jay Van Hoy, the duo behind last year's indie hit "Beginners" starring Ewan McGregor and Christopher Plummer (who won Best Supporting Actor at this year's Oscars for his performance in the film), along with Todd Hagopian.
Williams, who recently starred as Atlantic City gang leader "Chalky" White on HBO's "Boardwalk Empire", had his breakthrough role as drug dealer Omar Little on "The Wire".
Born Russell Jones, Ol' Dirty Bastard rose to fame as a founding member of the Wu-Tang Clan in the early '90s before going on to a successful solo career - though later in life he became better known for his criminal record than for his music. He died two days prior to his 36th birthday after collapsing at the recording studio of fellow Wu-Tang Clan founder RZA.
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