Wayne Barrow, producer of the film Notorious, has released the first photo of Jamal Woolard in the role of B.I.G. (aka Christopher Wallace) over on his official blog. Dude looks just like B.I.G., who will always go down as one of New York's greatest rap artists. Underneath the photo, Wayne writes, "Although Jamal has a bit of history of his own in the music industry, he is still relatively unknown, which we thought was an integral element in filling the role. Jamal, a Brooklyn native, has been working hard to capture the spirit of Christopher's character, the soul of the man. We are extremely excited about our choice of casting, his natural charm and charismatic demeanor is very reminiscent of B.I.G and we look forward to sharing this ride with him..."
This should be a fascinating little picture, especially if you were/are a fan of Biggie Smalls and his music. (My wife still rocks out the occasional Biggie track in the car during a long road trip.) Starring alongside Woolard will be Angela Bassett (playing Smalls' mother, Voletta), Derek Luke (as Sean "Diddy" Combs) and Anthony Mackie (as Tupac Shakur). George Tillman Jr. will direct, while the film is set to head into production on March 24 in New York City. Fox Searchlight has already set a release date of January 16, 2009 for Notorious.
So, does this guy look like Biggie ... or what?