Ice T Says He Made $25,000 From 'New Jack City' Role
It has been 25 years since the classic drug thriller New Jack City graced big screens and raked in $7 million opening weekend in 1991. Fun Billboard fact: the movie's soundtrack also hit No. 2 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart. In a recent interview with Okayplayer, rapper Ice T -- who played Detective Sonny Appleton in the Mario Van Peebles-directed film -- revealed that he was hesitant to take on the role at the time because his rap career was beginning to flourish.
“I was still kind of shocked,” he said. "I got down there and they basically offered me the part to play Scotty in the movie, and you know, it was a cop. Original Gangster was just about to come out because "New Jack Hustler" ended up being on that album. I was in that mode and was like, ‘Damn man, do you really want to take a risk and be in a movie? It could ruin your career and right now it’s hot.’ I was on fire at that time, so I was nervous. Nobody had pulled off the acting sh-t correctly to me. Run [DMC] and them did Tougher Than Leather and they had Beat Street, Breakin’—stuff like that, but nobody was really a standout actor."
He then recalled how much he made from his role in New Jack City, which also featured contributions from Wesley Snipes as drug kingpin Nino Brown and Chris Rock as crack addict Benny “Pookie” Robinson. "I got paid scale, so for New Jack City I made about $25,000 for the whole movie,” he said. "The movie made like $67 million, but by now, it’s probably closer to $80 million bucks. That was my first lesson in Hollywood. How could I negotiate? I was never in a film."
These days, Ice T (real name Tracy Marrow) is collecting heftier checks thanks to his syndicated role as Detective Fin Tutoula on Dick Wolf's crime series Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.