On this day in comedy on June 15, 1969 Filmmaker, Actor, Writer, Rapper, Ice Cube (O’Shea Jackson) was born in Los Angeles, California.
Prior to influencing the world of comedy, Ice Cube gained fame as a rapper with the hardcore pioneering rap group, NWA. Then against the odds he had a successful solo career after leaving the group amidst a contract dispute. He became an iconic MC (voted #8 greatest of all-time by MTV) a budding actor (Boyz N the Hood, Trespass, The Glass Shield, Higher Learning) and at the urging of director, John Singleton, Cube expanded his reach to other genres.
In 1995 Ice Cube released Friday and turned a quiet joke (What kind of comedy is a rapper going to make?) into a cottage industry. Friday became a franchise and made stars of Chris Tucker, Mike Epps, Katt Williams, Terry Crews, Faizon Love, Sommore and starred Cube himself. He then made Barbershop and added another franchise to his list. Cube then did Are We There Yet? with was a film franchise and a TV series on TBS. Oh, and the Ride Along franchise with Kevin Hart.
Ice Cube has kept plenty of comedians and comedy actors working. He produced Janky Promoters, All About the Benjamins, The Players Club (his directorial debut), Beauty Shop, First Sunday, The Longshots and Lottery Ticket. Besides, Are We There Yet?, Ice Cube also produced Barbershop: The Series and Friday: The Animated Series. All this makes Ice Cube one of the strongest comedy impresarios of all-time.
By Darryl “D’Militant” Littleton
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