Less than a week after telling XXL that the Tupac biopic is on hold, director John Singleton has stepped away from the project all together. Carl Franklin, who has worked on projects such as Homeland and multiple HBO series, has replaced Singleton. The director made his announcement via an Instagram post claiming that the reason he is no longer involved in the film is “because the people involved aren’t really respectful of the legacy of Tupac Amaru Shakur.”
Real talk! The reason I am not making this picture is because the people involved aren't really respectful of the legacy of Tupac Amaru Shakur. I won't say much if you want you can read my articles in Hollywood Reporter on authenticity in Black Storytelling … To Pac's real fans just know I am still planning a movie on Tupac … It doesn't matter what they do mines will be better… Tupac was much more than a hip hop artist … He was a black man guided by his passions … Of most importance was his love of black people and culture … Something the people involved in this movie know nothing about… Real talk! How you gonna make a movie about a man when you suing his mother to get the rights to tell his story?! They have no true love 4 Pac so this movie will not be made with love! And that's why my ass isn't involved ! If Tupac knew what was going on he'd ride on all these fools and take it to the streets… But I won't do that … I'll just make my own project. What Yall think about that?!!
Singleton opened up to XXL about his thoughts on tackling a subject as complex and important as Tupac. Reading the interview again, Singleton hints that there was some friction amongst the parties making the film. “It’s very intimidating because, like I said, you just want to get it right,” he explained. “I think the picture is not going to be good unless it’s offensive to some people. So, whenever you make a movie, you always have different elements that people have their say about. But when I’m making my movies, John Singleton movies, it’s really just my voice. So I can’t be listening to all the other suggestions of all these other people and shit. So we’re not going to pull the trigger on that until it’s right. If somebody else wants to do something different then they can do something different. But if it’s going to be right, it’s going to be right. It’s going to be something that potentially adorns ‘Pac’s legacy.”