Before his infamous 1996 murder on the streets of Las Vegas, rapper Tupac Shakur reportedly auditioned to be a Jedi in the "Star Wars" prequels, according to a music industry insider.
Shakur, who actually studied acting at the Baltimore School for the Arts, was in line to play Jedi Master Mace Windu in 1999's "Star Wars: Episode I — The Phantom Menace," Rick Clifford, a former Death Row Records engineer, said in a recent interview with 2Pac-Forum.com.
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"Pac found out that I worked for Brian Austin Green, who was on '90210,' then he found out I worked on some movies, so we always talked about his film career and stuff," he said. "He was telling me that he was supposed to read for George Lucas and them. They wanted him to be a Jedi. I'm serious. Samuel L. Jackson got Tupac's part. Tupac said to me, 'Old man, keep your fingers crossed.' He said, 'I've got three movies coming up. One of them, I've got to read for George Lucas.'"
It's not clear when the reported reading would have happened, but filming for the movie started in June 1997, which was less than a year after the rapper's murder in September 1996, according to Rolling Stone.
Lucas and the film company behind "Star Wars" have not yet commented on Shakur's association with the franchise.
Shakur was just reaching the full height of his career when he was gunned down in Las Vegas in 1996 at the age of 25. His killing remains unsolved, though conspiracy theories have swirled for years in the hip hop industry over who was responsible for the murder.
The rapper's acting career was just blossoming at the time of his death. His résumé includes appearances in "Juice," "Above the Rim," and 1993's "Poetic Justice," where he starred opposite Janet Jackson. Two movies — "Bullet" and "Gridlock'd" — were released posthumously.
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