2Pac may have been a rookie actor during his brief time in film and television in the early-mid ’90s, but he was able to teach Wood Harris a powerful acting lesson.
The veteran actor appeared on The Rich Eisen Show in an episode published on Saturday (June 3), where he was asked about his time with ‘Pac while filming the 1994 classic, Above the Rim. Though it was only his third movie following Juice and Poetic Justice, the “California Love” rapper inadvertently taught Harris something he’s kept with him since.
“What I gained from 2Pac as a professional was I realized the power of the actor from 2Pac,” he began. “There’s a scene in the film where – it’s not even a scene, it’s a clip where we just drive up, get out of the car, enter the park. That’s the whole shot. So it’s action, we drive, we get out and walk in, cut. And we were in separate cars. I’m in my own car and 2Pac was in another car. He has a young lady driving him to the game.”
He continued: “So 2Pac grabbed [a knob that used to be in old cars] and slipped. There was a rhythm to it. Did it again and it was like, ‘Cut!’ He said, ‘Oh you guys gotta fix this. This ain’t working for me.’ So they said, ‘Nah let’s just try it again! I think you’ll be able to get it.’ So the second time, same thing happens. He gets out the car, goes to the trailer, stays in the trailer like two hours. So what did I learn from that? I learned the power of the actor.”
“Because they had to come, put another knob on the car for him. He chilled out, basically smoked weed in his trailer for two hours. He had the set smelling like whatever it was going around. But I really did gain that because it was a real gain. I realized that once they start filming you in the movie, they’re pretty much at your whim after that.”
Check out Wood Harris’ comments below:
Elsewhere during his chat on The Rich Eisen Show, Harris revealed a little-known fact about their movie: a body double was used to film 2Pac’s final scenes because he wound up getting shot at the time.
“So during [Above the Rim ], he got shot the first time. All that stuff – the rape allegation, the claim that came out and the shooting of him happened during Above the Rim, at the end of it,” Harris said. “So at the end, I had the director and the producer come to me like, ‘We’re gonna change up the end of this movie. He’s been shot so we think we’re gonna do this. We’re not sure, but we think we’re gonna do this.’ So they had this entirely different path to take on the film.”
He continued: “Turns out they found in the crowd a lookalike who looked just like 2Pac. So if you look at Above the Rim, at the end of movie, they utilized the lookalike who happened to look a lot like 2Pac. Was the same stature. [It was] at the end of the film and that’s how they resolved that.”
In other 2Pac news, the FX docu-series, Dear Mama: The Saga of Afeni & Tupac Shakur, has been receiving rave reviews since premiering on Hulu in April. In fact, it received a perfect 100 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes – which was after the series already shattered TV records.
The five-part docu-series focuses on the mother-son relationship between Afeni Shakur – a revolutionary and member of the Black Panther Party – and her son Tupac Shakur. The series premiered on April 21, and in turn, was the most-watched premiere episode for an unscripted series in FX’s 28-year history.
“It’s only fitting that Allen Hughes definitive piece on Tupac and Afeni Shakur delivered a record performance for us and it speaks to Tupac’s enduring legacy,” Nick Grad, president of FX Entertainment, said in a statement. “Allen’s examination of Tupac viewed through the prism of his mother Afeni is a fascinating take that really gets beneath the education and experience that shaped his life and inspired him to become one of the greatest artists ever.”