Russell Simmons, Def Jam co-founder, has announced plans for a forthcoming documentary series, titled "The Definitive History of Hip Hop." Set to begin production this year, the special doc will tell the "untold story of the birth" of hip-hop beginning with the early '70s through present day. According to the press release, the series will also include "visual effects, archival footage and celebrity interviews." Simmons' All Def Digital platform will produce the project in conjunction with Stephen David Entertainment and GroupM Entertainment
"Hip Hop began in the Bronx and Queens, and was fueled by pioneering new artists with an incredible hunger to express themselves in unimaginably bold new ways," said Simmons in a press release.
"'The Definitive History of Hip Hop' is the untold story of the birth of this art form – the series gets behind the scenes of what drove the beats, the rhymes, the ideas — and the people — that so powerfully hit a chord with all of youth culture in America and around the world," he continued. "It starts with the OGs of this disruptive force in entertainment, spotlights some of the lesser known artists who've fallen out of history or favor, and of course looks at the icons who are now household names whether you're in LA or London, Toledo or Tokyo... We are going long, and deep, and plan to follow the characters and story lines, the drama, the dreams, the deaths, the disruptions, that have made our narrative one of the most compelling American stories of the last three decades. And its future is still being written today, so the story is both timeless and endless."
The news comes after it was revealed in 2015 that Universal Pictures had been mulling a Def Jam Records biopic following the huge critical and financial success of the N.W.A. biopic "Straight Outta Compton." The film would be based on the 2002 book "Life and Def: Sex, Drugs, Money, + God," which was co-written by Simmons and Nelson George.