Our stories continue to be told in beautiful fashion. Last night, the SVA Theater in Manhattan, N.Y. world premiered the film Roxanne Roxanne: The Story of Roxanne Shante. With executive producers that include Pharrell Williams and Forest Whitaker and a cast boasting Nia Long and Mahershala Ali, the team delivered one of the most compelling and authentic hip-hop biopics yet.
Roxanne Shante was an early pioneer of the genre, a teenage battle rap sensation bred in the Queensbridge projects. She predated her fellow neighborhood heroes like Mobb Deep, Capone-N-Noreaga, and Nas—though we do get to see a young, shy Nasir Jones depicted in the film—who all rose a decade after her in the 90s. Shante was the first from the Bridge to pop in the mid-80s along with fellow legends and Queensbridge kings Marley Marl and MC Shan. The trio would go on to form rap’s first lucrative super clique, The Juice Crew.
A couple of members of the collective, Biz Markie and Masta Ace, were in the building as well former on-wax foes-turned-real life friends, Kangol Kid from U.T.F.O. and MC Sparky D. Pharrell and his right-hand woman, former journalist Mimi Valdes (who is also a producer on the film) came out to show support alongside Long, Capone, directors Coodie and Chike, and Ralph McDaniels (another producer).
“This story is not just my story, it’s our story,” Shante said before the movie started. “It’s not just a story about one lady in hip-hop, it’s actually about two. It’s the story of friendships and bonds. It’s a story for the runaway, for the foster child. It’s a story for the abused woman. It’s a story for the domestic violence survivor. It’s a story for the depressed mother who felt she let her children down or misled them in some type of way. It’s a story about hip-hop. It’s a story about the ability to never give up on yourself and know [that] if you stay focused and understand who you are and whose you are, that you will be alright. This is what this is.”
Roxanne Roxanne is, indeed, unfiltered. We see the MCs plight at home as her mother struggles with alcoholism after a traumatic situation changes their family’s lives forever. We also see Shante’s plight as she tangles with an abusive lover and gets taken advantage of as a 16-year-old coming into the rap game. We see and are compelled by the strength actress Chante Adams exudes onscreen as the lead character.
Afterward the premiere, most of the VIPs who came to theater went to the after party at nearby Up & Down. Biz held court most of the night DJing, and delivered a mean 80s-centric, New York hip-hop and R&B set that included Big Daddy Kane, Guy, EPMD and, of course, Roxanne Shante.
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE
Below, our gift guide highlights some of our favorite Walmart finds for anyone in need of a home refresh.
On Oct. 10, Walmart unveiled a brand new, state of the art creative studio on the campus of Central State University.
The Walmart HBCU Black & Unlimited Tour made its final stop at Mississippi Valley State University (MVSU) and left a lasting impact on students and alumni alike.
“REVOLT Black News” correspondent Kennedy Rue counts down the top five moments from the 2023 Billboard Music Awards, including surprising wins, historic firsts, and dope performances. Sponsored by Amazon.
In October, Walmart unveiled a brand new, state of the art creative studio on the campus of Central State University. The HBCU located in Wilberforce, OH was the first stop on Walmart’s Black and Unlimited HBCU Tour.
After unveiling their state of the art creative studio on the campus of Central State University, Walmart brought the HBCU Black & Unlimited Tour to Virginia State University (VSU) on Oct. 13.
Walmart HBCU Black & Unlimited Tour brings attention and wisdom to North Carolina Central University
On Oct. 17, Walmart brought the third stop of the HBCU Black & Unlimited Tour to North Carolina Central University (NCCU).
Groovey Lew on hip hop style, Johnell Young's industry secrets, BGS salon's wig mastery and more | 'Black Girl Stuff'
Fashion King Groovey Lew on masterminding hip-hop’s most iconic looks. Actor Johnell Young reveals the secret to breaking into the entertainment industry. Celebrity hairstylist Dontay Savoy and got2B ambassador Tokyo Stylez are in the BGS Salon with the perfect wig install. Plus, comedian Lauren Knight performs.
On this all-new episode of “On In 5,” multitalented Nigerian artist Pheelz opens up about waiting for his opportunity to fully express himself through music, his inspirations and emotions, and the musical icons he grew up admiring. Watch!
Kareem Cook talks growing up in The Bronx, studying at Duke & networking | 'The Blackprint with Detavio Samuels'
On this all-new episode of “The Blackprint with Detavio Samuels,” the host and REVOLT CEO sits down with Kareem Cook. Throughout the introspective episode, Cook talks growing up in The Bronx, studying at Duke and being nervous to be in the South at the time, network vs. education, taking advantage of your opportunities, and connecting with Debbie Allen. Watch!
Tiffany Haddish on therapy, wild fan interactions & the upcoming 'Haunted Mansion' movie | 'The Jason Lee Show'
On this all-new episode of “The Jason Lee Show,” the one and only Tiffany Haddish sits for a must-watch conversation about wild interactions with fans, her new movie ‘Haunted Mansion,’ bringing her therapist on dates, and being present. Watch the hilarious interview here.
For this all-new episode of “On In 5,” singer-songwriter BNXN discusses his journey from IT to music, finding his voice and originality, linking up with Wizkid for their hits “Mood” and “Many Ways,” and what fans can expect from him this year — including a new album. Watch the full episode here!
This is the inspiring story of Karen Washington, a pioneering urban farmer who has been revolutionizing urban spaces by transforming them into vibrant community gardens and educational hubs. Sponsored by State Farm.
Lauren London sparks conversation on how Black parents unintentionally give kids negative outlook on money
At the live taping of “Assets Over Liabilities” at REVOLT WORLD, Lauren London opened up about how witnessing the financial decisions adults made during her childhood fueled her outlook on money.
In this new episode of ‘Bet on Black,’ food and beverage take center stage as aspiring Black entrepreneurs from It’s Seasoned, Black Farmer Box, and Moors Brewing Co. present their business ideas to judges with mentorship from Melissa Butler. Watch here!
“Every time I’m in trouble, it’s been Black men that have come to my aid,” Madam DA Fani Willis said at REVOLT WORLD while speaking on the stereotype that they are not dependable or worth dating.
Black media leaders stress the space's importance because we're always antagonists in mainstream's storytelling
“I definitely feel those ‘heavier is the crown’ moments. But I also believe that Black entrepreneurs are uniquely positioned to be successful in the future,” Detavio Samuels said at AfroTech.