*New life has been breathed into 80s TV’s police procedural crime drama, “21 Jump Street,” which helped launch the careers of Hollywood luminaries such as Johnny Depp and our beloved Holly Robinson Peete.
In its soon-to-be-released big screen version, Channing Tatum (Coach Carter, Step Up) and Jonah Hill (Super Bad, Money Ball) shine as they deliver perfectly timed antics and action that will likely command the laughter and attention of theatergoers.
Directed by Phil Lord and Christopher Miller (Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs), the drama-turned-action-comedy will surprise you with its level of energy. Tatum and Hill take you on an action-packed ride as the pair team up to join the police force and end up disguised as high schoolers charged with executing a major drug sting. The movie’s action scenes are well executed and serve as the perfect complement to the hilarious comedic scenes that make the 21 Jump Street flow with ease.
As a surprise to many, famed rapper-turned-actor Ice Cube serves as the witty, aggressive Captain Dickson in the film. Dickson, who oversees the drug sting, has no tolerance for the antics of Schmidt (Hill) and Jenko (Tatum) and gives the pair a hard time as they work to carry out their mission. Although Ice Cube makes an excellent showing as a police captain, it is clearly opposite the “*Bleep* the Police” rapper that earned him entre’ into the entertainment business.
EURweb.com was able to catch up with Cube and gather firsthand insight on the movie, his role and what’s up next for his production company, CubeVison.
EURweb: How long have you been in film?
Ice Cube: I’ve been doing this thing here since 1990.
EURweb: Do you even know what number film this is for you?
Cube: I heard 30! But I don’t keep count. Once I finish one [movie], it’s in the rearview mirror and you kinda have to go on to the next thing. However I do take time to look back and reflect.
EURweb: How do you stay afloat in this ever-changing entertainment industry?
Cube: I’m always looking for the next project, even when I’m working on a project. I keep a lot of plates spinning, and I don’t rest on my laurels at all.
EURweb: Were you a fan ot the original 21 Jump Street series?
Cube: I wouldn’t say I was a fan, you know the show was hot, but I really didn’t have the time to consistently follow the show. I did watch it every now and then when I could. But I like where we went with this movie. It was the perfect movie to flip and make more of a comedy.
EURweb: What’s your favorite scene in the movie?
Cube: I like the “Korean Jesus” scene! That was dope. Seeing Jonah get into his many costumes has us all laughing. But the place we were in was an actual church, so everyone kept it cool with the “extra.”
EURweb: Your character, Captain Dickson, keeps everyone focused and under control. Who is that person for you in your personal life?
Cube: If anyone, I’d have to say my wife. I wouldn’t say she’s as hard as a Captain Dickson though. No one else has that much influence.
EURweb: Are you a Captain Dickson-ish father?
Cube: Oh no. I usually don’t have to go that hard. If you stay consistent in your discipline, you won’t have to be that kinda guy.
EURweb: What was your favorite moment off-camera?
Cube: The cast are all comedians so every moment was a “moment.” I wrapped up my scenes quicker than the rest, but I did enjoy telling old NWA stories.
EURweb: How did your high school experience compare to that in the movie?
Cube: I was a part of the jocks for a minute playing football, then I got into music so I went from the jocks to the “freaks.” Our clothes were different and eventually it caught on and people started trying to be us. Which made us the new innovators and no longer the freaks.
EURweb: The ending gave us hope for more. What can you say about it?
Cube: If the movie does what it’s supposed to do, we’ll be back!
EURweb: What’s next for your production company, CubeVision?
Cube: Getting the next “Friday” movie into works as we speak, there’s an NWA movie we’re putting together and getting the right directors for. “Are We There Yet?” is coming back on TBS, and more Coors commercials!
EURweb: What’s your message for African-American males working hard for success and preventing becoming a stereotype?
Cube: Well … you have to be proud of who you are. Sometimes when you’re so busy running from stereotypes, you run from who you are. So, I’d say be yourself, but also strive to be better. Recognize your opportunities because they’re all around you. I don’t care where you come from, there are opportunities and it’s all about taking advantage of them. If you’re sitting back and just waiting for something good to come to you, it’s not gonna happen. You have to make something good happen.
“21 Jump Street” will be in theaters March 16.
Watch the red band trailer for “21 Jump Street” (NOTE: Contains adult language; may not be safe for playing openly at work. Otherwise, enjoy):