N.W.A. Biopic ‘Straight Outta Compton’ Brings On Writer


It’s been a long time coming for an N.W.A. movie, and it looks like things are moving in the right direction. F. Gary Gray will direct the film and now Jonathan Herman will write the script after Andrew Berloff wrote an initial draft.

Herman has been hot as of late, writing ‘Demonologists’ for Robert Zemeckis, as well as an untitled hacker movie to be produced by Mark Wahlberg and Stephen Levinson. The N.W.A. project started with New Line, which developed it for years, but now Universal Pictures is picking it up while Ice Cube is producing it.

Arabian Prince, DJ Yella, Dr. Dre, Eazy-E, and Ice Cube were the original members of the group, and as the story goes, Eazy-E bailed Dre out of jail in exchange for Dre’s production duties early on. MC Ren joined in 1988 and Arabian Prince departed a year later along with Ice Cube, who split over a dispute involving royalties with the group’s manager, Jerry Heller.

In 1995, Easy-E passed away from complications involving AIDS. Eazy’s widow Tomica Woods and Dr. Dre (under his Crucial Films company) are also producing the movie, and Will Packer is serving as executive producer. The movie will take place on the bullet-ridden Compton streets. — Max Weinstein