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A film about 1980’s rapper Roxanne Shantè has been selected to be screened at the Sundance Film Festival.

The film will document the rise of the then 14-year old rapper in the 1980s. Shantè rose to fame by writing a response to UTFO’s woman-chasing hit “Roxanne Roxanne.” Her song, “Roxanne’s Revenge” rapped from the perspective of the woman being pursued, brushing off the advances. It could be considered a precursor to TLC’s similarly-themed “No Scrubs.” The song wound up spawning the  “Roxanne Wars” where another woman rapper, named “The Real Roxanne” came out dissing her.

Shantè also gained recognition as being a woman who held her own as a member of Marley Marl’s Juice Crew. By default, she was thrust into the Bridge Wars between the Juice Crew and KRS-One‘s Boogie Down Productions. Things got pretty nasty when KRS dissed her on the track “The Bridge Is Over” when he said Shantè was “only good for steady f*cking,” a line he now admits he regrets.

Shantè would only release two albums in 1989 and 1992 and pretty much left the music industry by the time she was 25 years old. She would go on to mentor up and coming women rappers and appear on VH1’s reality competition show Ms. Rap Supreme. Her name would pop up in infamy in 2009 when he claimed to have earned a psychology degree from Cornell University and that through a contract loophole had her former recording home Warner Bros. Records fund her education. That story was later found to be completely false.

The film will star Nia Long and newcomer Chante Adams. Luke Cage and Moonlight actor Mahershala Ali is also featured. In an interview with The Daily Beast, Ali said about the film:

“Usually when you look at hip-hop films and biopics you think, this is a story of this album, or how so and so came up in the business… But it explores why she kind of disappeared and got derailed, to some degree. I believe that’s going to be a film that really grabs people as well, because it’s very nuanced compared to a lot of music biopics.”

The movie is also being produced by Forrest Whitaker and Pharell Williams’ IamOther. The last time they linked up they brought us DOPE which came out, dope. Judging from that, this film should be no different.

Photo: Instagram

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