Jerry Heller worked with Eazy-E and N.W.A as they rose through American popular culture in the 1990s. He is played by Paul Giamatti in the film Straight Outta Compton, which details the group’s journey through the music industry.
In an interview with Murder Master Music Show, Heller says that the movie was “revisionist history,” especially regarding Eazy-E. He notes the scene where Eazy-E is shown tearing up while driving past a billboard for Dr. Dre’s The Chronic as especially disturbing.
“Eazy was a hard muthafucka,” Heller says. “Of course he would never ever cry.”
In the movie, the rapper is shown preparing bags of weed to sell after being forced to sell his house while Dr. Dre is enjoying success with Suge Knight at Death Row Records.
Heller explains that Eazy-E was not broke when Dr. Dre left Ruthless Records and that he actually made money off of the rapper-producer’s work after he signed with Jimmy Iovine and Interscope, which included The Chronic.
“I made the Dr. Dre deal with Jimmy,” Heller says. “Jimmy called and said, ‘I don’t think that Dre will ever record for your company again.’ We had been trying to make things right and his people just wouldn’t allow it and I said to Eazy, ‘You know, Jimmy’s probably right and if we were gonna make a deal for his futures, we might as well do it with someone like Jimmy who we know will pay us.'”
The manager says that the scene where Eazy-E gets beat up by Suge Knight and his goons is also inaccurate.
“First of all Eazy would have never gone to that studio if Suge had called,” he says. “He would never go there at 3:30 in the morning if Suge woulda called him. There is only one guy that could have gotten him over to that studio and we all know who that is. That was ridiculous. They never touched him. There were four guys there dressed in black with lead pipes. He called me the next morning. He was embarrassed because he had let that happen to put himself in that position. He believed that he was going there to see somebody else. He called me and told me and we dealt with it.”
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