New Tupac Books Coming     

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11/11/2003 12:13:17 PM
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Seven years after his murder, hip-hop megastar Tupac Shakur is speaking for himself in a documentary movie and best-selling book.
 
Shakur, who was shot and killed in Las Vegas at age 25, recently was listed by Forbes magazine as No. 8 on its list of money-earning dead entertainers.

His mother, former Black Panther activist Afeni Shakur, the keeper of her son's legacy, says the past seven years "have been extremely painful, watching and listening while others incorrectly attempted to define who my son really was."

She says she's not trying to change her son's image, "but I have an obligation to let him tell his story even if he is not here physically. The end result is in God's hands."

Afeni Shakur, who is planning her own book, endorsed and cooperated with the documentary and companion book. They portray her son not as a gangsta rapper but as a politically conscious street poet who suffered from what he called "the government's police terrorism."

She says that "the true story of Tupac is finally being shared with the world."

•Tupac: Resurrection opens Friday and is designed as a "self-portrait of a cultural icon." Directed by Lauren Lazin, it's narrated by Shakur himself, using interviews, poetry performances, private home movies and never-before-seen concert footage. The soundtrack, with Eminem's single Running (Dying to Live), is out today.

• The companion book, Tupac: Resurrection (Atria, $29.95), edited by Jacob Hoye and Karolyn Ali and touted by its publisher as "the autobiography he never got to write," was published last month.

It's an illustrated scrapbook that deals with Shakur's rise from poverty, his success and his 11-month imprisonment for sexual abuse. (His version: "Everybody was having a good time, nothing sexual.") It's No. 144 on USA TODAY's Best-Selling Books list. Last week the publisher added a second printing. There are 135,000 copies in print.

•Afeni Shakur: Evolution of a Revolutionary by Jasmine Guy will be published in February by Atria. It includes transcripts culled from seven years of conversations between Afeni Shakur and Guy, an actress who starred in the movie Harlem Nights and the TV series A Different World. It deals with Shakur's recovery from an addiction to crack and her role as matriarch of the hip-hop movement.

• Angela Ardis' book, Inside a Thug's Heart, endorsed by Shakur's family, will be published in May by Kensington. It describes the author's three-month relationship, mostly through letters and phone calls, with Shakur while he was in prison. Ardis, a screenwriter and actress, says she'll include previously unpublished poems and erotic stories Shakur wrote and sent from jail.

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