Mopreme Shakur, Tupac’s step-brother and original member of Thug Life, is set to appear in an upcoming episode of BET’s series “American Gangster” to talk about his father and currently incarcerated Dr. Mutulu Shakur.
As a regular viewer of the show’s first two seasons, Mopreme reached out to the producers to develop interest in his father’s story. A political prisoner, imprisoned for his revolutionary activities in the 1960s and 1970s, Dr. Shakur’s story is not typical of those told on the show. Nonetheless, Dr. Shakur’s role both in the civil rights movement and as step-father and mentor to the legendary, late Tupac Shakur compelled the producers to take a more critical look at the term “gangster” and include his story amongst those that will be told in the upcoming season.
Mopreme serves as a consulting producer for the upcoming episode, titled “Mutulu Shakur and The Republic of New Afrika” and set to air in the fall, where he provides insight, direction, subject matter for interviews and acting as a liaison between the show and his father.
The rapper will take viewers on an historical tour of the Shakur family’s earliest residences and places of work. Viewers can also expect surprise interviews with political and entertainment icons, all of whom knew, worked with or were touched by Dr. Mutulu Shakur.
“I knew my father isn’t the kind of gangster they had been doing stories about, but I thought that if my father suffers from all the consequences of being labeled and incarcerated as ‘a gangster’ by the system that at the very least he could benefit from his story being told,” Mopreme explained of his reasons for working on the “American Gangster” series.
“I’m very excited to be working on this episode because my father is an important figure in the civil rights movement and his story should be remembered as a part of American history, so some of the positive things can be known about him and the Shakur legacy,” he continued.
Mutulu Shakur was an important leader the Republic of New Afrika, who was implicated in the liberation of Assata Shakur and Brinks robberies in the New York area. He was ultimately convicted and sentenced to 60 years in federal prison. Though there was little to no hard evidence of his involvement in these crimes, he was convicted under the RICO (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations) Act in 1986. He and his supporters maintain his innocence and further that he is a political prisoner because the real motivation for his incarceration lies in his activities as a revolutionary figure and not for the crimes he was convicted of committing.
The episode is slated to air in November on BET.
In addition to Shakur, the upcoming season of “American Gangster” will also document the lives of Mac Dre, Larry Davis, Monster Cody and J. Edgar Hoover, among others.