Political Activist, Poet, Author Kevin Powell posted a statement on his Facebook page, Friday, announcing he filed a federal lawsuit against the producers and writers of ALL EYEZ ON ME, the new Tupac Shakur biopic, for copyright infringement.
“… it is clear that my exclusive Vibe cover stories on Tupac Shakur (when he was alive), were lifted, without proper credit or compensation of any kind to me, and used in ALL EYEZ ON ME. As the owner of the copyright to these articles, ALL EYEZ ON ME infringed on my rights by using content and narrative that was exclusive to my writings. I am seeking justice and a resolution in this matter that is fully fair to me and all the work I’ve done throughout the years, as an author and protector of the Tupac Shakur narrative…” Powell wrote in his statement.
Kevin Powell has written for publications such as Esquire, Newsweek, The Washington Post, Essence, Rolling Stone, New York Amsterdam News, and Vibe, where he was a founding staff member and served as a senior writer. He interviewed and profiled General Colin Powell and Tupac Shakur. Most recently, he has been a Writing Fellow for the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies, as well as a Phelps Stokes Fund Senior Fellow.
Since 1993, Powell has published 11 books, including the most recent title Barack Obama, Ronald Reagan, and the Ghost of Dr. King: Blogs and Essays (Lulu.com, May 1, 2012) – “22 raw, unfiltered blogs and essays, intent on not just exposing, but understanding, all the while building bridges of dialogue — with ourselves, and with our America.” Powell’s childhood memoir, My Own Private Ghetto, and The Kevin Powell Reader were published in 2011 and 2012 respectively.
All Eyez on Me, released June 16th is a biographical drama film about hip-hop artist Tupac Shakur, directed by Benny Boom and written by Jeremy Haft, Eddie Gonzalez and Steven Bagatourian. Titled after Shakur’s 1996 fourth studio album of the same name, the film stars Demetrius Shipp Jr. as Shakur and Kat Graham, Lauren Cohan, Hill Harper, and Danai Gurira in supporting roles.
Stay tuned to Black Westchester for more on this developing story.