Rapper, mogul, actor, and producer Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson opens up about his journey to success, hip hop, new music, and leaving his legacy behind with his new star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
”Get Rich or Die Tryin’” was 50 Cent’s debut hip hop album, which was released back in 2005. It’s been 14 years since then, and today, he’s done exactly what his album states and then some. With more than 30 million albums sold worldwide, multiple successful beverage partnerships, and being the executive producer of “Power,” one of the most-watched shows of this generation, 50 Cent, has majorly made his mark as a businessman. Not to mention, he’s done it all while being one of the most controversial figures of our time, which he doesn’t mind. One of his biggest viral moments was popularizing the phrase “Get the strap,” which ultimately turned into another bag for the 44-year-old when he allegedly sold it to Viacom’s Bellator for $1 million.
Today, the mogul is taking pictures with his new star on the iconic Walk of Fame, and just like 14 years ago, 50 Cent can’t and won’t be stopped. “There are times in business where you don’t have competitors, so you make ’em,” he said, referring to igniting rivalry between himself and his competitors. “But pick someone who’s really good at what they do, and then try to compete. It’s just the competitive nature in me. Look at your records, find your favorite records. Then when you’re making a record, go back and play your own record against that one. It tells you if you need more work.”
When it comes to his early success, 50 Cent contributes his come-up to America’s soft spot for the troubled underdog. “People love things that are damaged or distorted,” he said. “The album is ‘Get Rich or Die Tryin’,’ and at the time it was: back then when all parties involved are still on the street, and the possibility of dying is very present. That’s what makes it exciting because the stakes are so high. Either it works, or you die in the process. And people hear that, and they go, ‘s–t….’ They watch it like a feature film.”
Along with Fifty’s multiple accolades, he also has been one of the major voices in hip hop; a genre he said isn’t quite what it used to be. “I look at it like we lost our color at that point, and hip-hop became broad enough for everybody to participate in. And this is when it grows faster because people see themselves as being able to be a part of it, and not just spectate around it,” he said. “Then you start to look at the charts, and you see Post Malone and these guys — and look, he’s real talented. But I thought Post was a little confused when I met him for the first time: He had this ill mink coat on, but then he had cowboy boots. I didn’t know if he was a rapper or a country singer. I was like, ‘Yo, my man, just rap!’”
Fifty also commented on “Finding Neverland,” the documentary that looked into the sexual assault claims made against #MichaelJackson by two of Jackson’s former friends. “It did damage my perception of Michael Jackson,” he said, referring to #OprahWinfrey’s interview with the accusers. “You see it and go, ‘damn ….’ But are we supposed to still dance when the music comes on, or are we supposed to think about the little boys? There’s no answer, so there’s nothing to resolve it. There’s no one who’s gonna come help you figure out what to think about that.”
He then carried the conversation over to his feelings about Eddie Murphy apologizing for his ‘80s stand-up comedy show “Raw.” “You know, I saw Eddie Murphy apologized for ‘Raw,’ and I was like, ‘f–k is wrong with you?’ I don’t understand why you apologize for being a comedian, you’re supposed to have a warped perspective. Who is the apology for? And if we’re apologizing today for [things said] in the 1980s, then s–t, everybody’s f–king wrong.”
When it comes to new music, 50 said he hasn’t called it quits yet. “Soon. You’ll see something from me in ‘For Life,’ the way I did the theme song for ‘Power.’ And then, I’ll say I’ve got some music that I’ve been working on quietly, ’cause I wanted to just put it out. I’ll probably release it quietly too, maybe in the middle of the night sometime.” And as far as 50 Cent’s slick mouth goes, he says he has no regrets. “No, because at the point [I said it], I was thinking that” he said. “I don’t ever apologize for that — everything you go through makes you who you are.”