Forest Whitaker’s Biopic About the ‘Roxanne Wars’ of 1980s Hip Hop is Filming on Orchard Street Today

Posted on: July 26th, 2016 at 9:24 am by
This image has been archived or removed.

Hip-hop pioneer Roxanne Shante is getting the biopic treatment.

A new film is in the works about the so-called “Roxanne Wars” of the 1980s in New York City. The feature – dubbed Roxanne, Roxanne for the popular U.T.F.O. B-side hit of same – chronicles Shante’s rise from 14-year-old MC to hip-hop gold all because of a response record called “Roxanne’s Revenge.” That release yielded the most such response recordings of any song.

From Wikipedia:

14-year-old Lolita Shanté Gooden was walking outside a New York City housing project called Queensbridge, when she heard Tyrone Williams, disc jockey Mr. Magic, and record producer Marley Marl talking about how U.T.F.O. had canceled their appearance at a show they were promoting. Gooden offered to make a hip-hop record that would get back at U.T.F.O., with her taking on the moniker Roxanne Shanté, after her middle name. The three took her up on the idea, with Marley producing “Roxanne’s Revenge.” The single was released in late 1984, taking the original beats from an instrumental version of “Roxanne, Roxanne.” It was very confrontational and laced with profanities, but was an instant hit that sold over 250,000 copies in the New York area alone. Legal action followed, and it was re-released in early 1985 with new beats and the obscenities removed.

Anyway. Back to the movie …

This image has been archived or removed.

Michael Larnell will direct; Forest Whitaker is attached to the project as co-producer and actor.

Filming on Roxanne, Roxanne has been underway the past couple months, and continues on the Lower East Side today. The token “no parking” signs are posted around Hell Square for the shoot.

Recent Stories

Truck Versus Tree on Clinton Street [PHOTOS]

Clinton Street just lost one of its mature trees. Last week, a truck driver (with a Bud Light trailer) collided with a tree on the east side between Rivington and Stanton, blocking the road with fallen foliage. It handily snapped the trunk.

Going Inside the Jarmulowsky Bank Hotel [PHOTOS]

As part of its area charm offensive, DLJ Real Estate Partners recently opened the doors to the Jarmulowsky Bank Building during its conversion to posh boutique hotel. The iconic Beaux Arts-style landmark has been under renovations for nigh on six years already, resulting in a new construction next door and the addition of a replica rooftop […]

Century-Old Tattoo and Flash Ephemera at the South Street Seaport Museum

Daredevil Tattoo is hosting a can’t miss event with the South Street Seaport Museum. We have been documenting the history of tattooing on the Bowery for years; this event is making history all its own. Gus Wagner flash just for you. From the sea merchant-cum-tattoo artist and most artistically marked-up man in America. Seriously. You […]

Luscious Jackson Singer has Solo Art Exhibition at 198 Allen Street

Fans of Luscious Jackson will be happy to hear that New York City’s own Jill Cuniff has an art show happening all weekend at 198 Allen Street. The Luscious Jackson singer-songwriter/bassist unveils “Lyric and Word Paintings” at the perennial pop-up tonight, showcasing a collection of abstract watercolor and mixed media paintings, some of which feature some […]

Rent Hike Forces Häagen-Dazs Out of Chinatown After 41 Years

The longstanding Häagen-Dazs ice creamery in Chinatown will soon close its doors at the corner of Bayard and Mott Streets. The store has been at 53 Mott Street since 1977. A purported rent hike is the culprit, ending the decades-long tenure. The $10,000-per-month lease is up November 30, which doubles as the final day in […]