When I read headlines saying that Michael K. Williams, best known as Omar from The Wire and Chalky White from Boardwalk Empire, would be playing the late Old Dirty Bastard in a biopic, I got equal parts excited and confused. Williams is dynamic and has a good chance of doing the wild Wu-Tang member’s persona some justice, but who knew that America was interested in an ODB biopic? Well, it turns out that they’re not, exactly.

Williams will play ODB in the upcoming film Dirty White Boy, which is actually about…a dirty white boy named Jarred Weisfeld, a 22-year-old VH1 production assistant with very little entertainment experience who talked his way into becoming the drug-addled rapper’s assistant. The film will focus on Westfield’s uncommon hustle and all of the hard work he put into ODB’s comeback until the rapper’s untimely death from a drug overdose cut that trajectory short in 2004. Cool story, bro.

Hearing that yet another movie will focus on the white auxillary character in an intriguing black person’s life is extremely annoying, and I don’t understand why this keeps happening in Hollywood. Like The Blind Side, Cry Freedom, and a host of others, Dirty White Boy is in the category of “movies that should reasonably be about the more intriguing black character whose life is the reason for the story but are somehow centered around a secondary white character.” This is not to say that the idea of an Old Dirty Bastard biopic is foolproof by any means, but it’s so tiring to see talented actors like Williams who should be leading men end up in roles that should be lead roles but are written as otherwise.

What do you think? Why does this keep happening and it is ok?

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  • Monique

    Jared wanted to tell his own story and he told it. If we want our stories told, we have to tell them ourselves. We don’t need to begrudge anyone else of their personal narrative in the meantime. If someone had written an ODB biopic and the same studio panned it, THEN I would find a need to be perturbed.

    • [email protected] My issue is actually with the title. Not really digging it in relation to the concept. But that’s just me.

    • Denise

      @Monique We do tell our own stories, all the time. Go to a a Black or African film festival. You’ll see them. And sometimes we tear ourselves down. There’s talk of a Barbara Jordan biopic starring Viola Davis. Some in the Black blogosphere are already questioning if there needs to be a film about Barbara Jordan.

    • Karen

      @ Denise I think you’re missing the point. Monique didn’t indicate that there are no black people telling their stories, rather, she suggested that those who don’t can’t expect for their stories to be told. @ Monique…I totally agree.

    • TheBestAnonEver, Part 2

      ‘ If someone had written an ODB biopic and the same studio panned it, THEN I would find a need to be perturbed.’

      Then you would most likely never need to be perturbed because chances are you would NEVER know if this happened.

  • Socially Maladjusted

    .

    • Socially Maladjusted

      wrong topic

  • “This is not to say that the idea of an Old Dirty Bastard biopic is foolproof by any means, but it’s so tiring to see talented actors like Williams who should be leading men end up in roles that should be lead roles but are written as otherwise.

    What do you think? Why does this keep happening and it is ok?”

    A guaranteed Oscar nomination and/or win, perhaps?

  • Tonton Michel

    This was disappointing, I would have been very interested in see a bio on ODB, but like others have said it is up to us to tell our stories, besides wopuld you want anyone else telling it?

    BTW add Last King Of Scottland to that list.

  • mamareese

    Sounds to me like that kat is just telling his story. Just so happens that the person he was involved with was black. What’s the deal?