WME has signed a deal to manage the estate of late rapper Notorious B.I.G. The agency’s newly established Legends group will partner with the rapper’s mother Ms. Voletta Wallace and the family of the Estate of the Notorious B.I.G.
This announcement builds upon WME’s existing roster of marquee estates including Andy Kaufman, Eartha Kitt, Peter Tosh, the CBGB brand and Ram Dass’ Love Serve Remember Foundation. WME also works with longtime estate clients Agatha Christie, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Donna Summer, August Wilson, Isaac Asimov, Edward Albee, Abe Burrows and Terrence McNally.
Notorious B.I.G. (a.k.a. Christopher Wallace) was a four-time Grammy nominee who gained success as a solo artist after releasing his first single, “Juicy.” He soon followed it up with his debut album Ready to Die in 1994, which peaked at No. 15 on the Billboard 200 chart. He then produced two more hit singles (“Big Poppa” and “One More Chance”) for the album, which helped revitalize the East Coast hip hop scene.
In 1995, Biggy Smalls formed protégé group Junior M.A.F.I.A. which propelled rapper Lil Kim into the spotlight.
On March 9, 1997, the rapper was shot and killed in a drive-by shooting in Los Angeles. His legacy has been kept alive via posthumous releases including 1997’s Life After Death, 1999’s Born Again and 2005’s Duets: The Final Chapter. The artist has over 28 million RIAA Certified albums sold and five billion streams worldwide.
Documentaries and films have been made chronicling Biggie’s life, including Fox Searchlight’s, Notorious, Netflix’s Biggie: I Got a Story to Tell and Saban Film’s City Of Lies starring Johnny Depp and Forest Whitaker. All three films were produced by Voletta Wallace and B.I.G’s former manager Wayne Barrow. Further cementing B.I.G’s legacy, his childhood street, St James Place in Brooklyn was renamed after him and he was inducted into the 2020 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.