"If I was white, I would have been like John Wayne."
Interviewed by Benjamin Svetkey for Entertainment Weekly in March of 1994, Tupac was clearly feeling the stress of a life in turmoil. In the midst of facing sexual assault charges and feeling the pressures of fame and notoriety, he told the reporter, "I feel like a tragic hero in a Shakespeare play" before openly talking about the Black Panthers, Dan Quayle, and a host of other topics. Pieces from the interview are presented here in animated form courtesy of PBS Digital Studios' Blank on Blank series.
"I'm not really a religious person, but I believe that God wants me to do something, and it has to do with Thug Life. I want there to be a life for the street element. Instead of we always gettin' shut out, instead of [being] defenseless, having power."
"I have no friends. I have no resting place. I never sleep. I can never close my eyes."
"Just as much truth I bring to my work, a journalist should bring that much truth to their work."
"There's a machine I have nothing to do with. It's called the Tupac Machine. And the media in this country has fueled it, and made me a monster. They say I'm a criminal. They say I spit hateful, vicious, violent lyrics. I'm ready to be the bad guy. They gave me that job. I'm ready to have it."
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[Via PBS ]
Tupac Shakur on Life and Death | Blank on Blank | PBS Digital Studios (VIDEO).
Animated by Patrick Smith .