The film originally premiered at last month's Sundance Film Festival.
Netflix has unleashed the trailer for their upcoming original film Roxanne Roxanne, which chronicles the fleeting career of a 14 year-old rapper who came from Queensbridge housing unit in New York. Roxanne Shanté is credited with influencing hip-hop with her one notable musical contribution from the early 80s. The project details her ascent to underground notoriety, all while hustling on the mean streets of New York in order to protect herself from the dangers lurking within.
The film is set in a time when the genre known as hip-hop was still in its infancy. The story reveals how Shanté was able to carve out a distinct and legendary presence with "Roxanne's Revenge," the single she is most known for. It was written as a response to the 1984 UTFO hit "Roxanne Roxanne," which speaks ill of a girl with the same name who been characterized as being a tease. Shanté's track was recorded in a single take, and paired her fiery verses with a simple drum track. After its release and rampant circulation within the hip-hop community, several artists were inspired to record their own responses to this underground hit.
The film is being touted as a "hip-hop anti-biopic," as Shanté did not experience mainstream success or an influx of wealth in the wake of the single's release and reception. However, the film ultimately examines the "inner reality of street cred, which isn’t about moving dope or dropping dimes or pointing AKs." Instead, it focuses its cinematic preoccupations on “waking up each day to a neighbourhood of no hope."
Roxanne Roxanne sees Chanteé Adams cast in the lead role, while Oscar winner Mahershala Ali assumes the role of her boyfriend. The film, which was co-produced by Pharrell Williams' I Am Other and Forrest Whittaker's Significant Productions imprint, is slated to have a small theatrical run in New York and Los Angeles starting March 23, before premiering on Netflix shortly afterwards.
Peep the trailer below: