E.B. Wright was only 4 years old when her father, rap mastermind Eazy-E, passed, but she is doing everything she can to carry on his legacy.
Following the release of Straight Outta Compton, the now-24-year-old opened up to ESSENCE.com about her thoughts on the biopic, the controversy surrounding the film and remembering her father, 20 years later.
What are your thoughts on Straight Outta Compton? You shared your thoughts on Twitter briefly, but you mentioned you had some inaccuracies you wanted to clear up.
Yeah, overall, I think it’s an incredible film. For the most part, it definitely gets the story out there. You know my generation is not really familiar with Eazy-E and NWA and where they came from and how they started and what all they accomplished and what they did and what they had to go through. I’m really excited for everyone to learn that, but I just felt like there were a lot of pivotal moments of my dad’s life that were left out.
I am working on a documentary that I’m producing with my mom Tracy [Jernagin]. It’s going to touch on a lot of my dad’s life and a lot of things that they didn’t show in the movie, but mainly focus on the scandal surrounding his death and what happened afterwards: What happened to his kids? What happened to his estate? We’re going to talk about all of that.
[Dr. Dre’s ex] Dee Barnes just tweeted that if Eazy-E would have told more of the women’s stories if he had made the film. What are you thoughts on that?
It would have, and that’s why there were no women showed with my dad. With Dre, you meet his first baby mama and his first kid, you see him meeting his wife. With Ice Cube, you see Kim, who he’s been with forever. You see all these situations, but with my dad’s story, nothing was shown at all. Tomica [Woods-Wright, who also was an executive producer on the film] didn’t want anybody to be shown. And that’s crazy in itself because I feel like you’re really erasing history.
This movie so huge and it’s powerful. You’re supposed to tell the truth. My dad is not here and could not being in control of his own storyline. There are things that I know that my dad would have liked to have been in there. And like I said, it’s okay, because I am going to touch on all of that in my documentary.
How did your mom feel about the film?
Same as me. Overall, loved it. I cannot praise Jason Mitchell enough. He did a phenomenal job of portraying my father. To be honest, it was even shocking to me—his demeanor, his personality, every little thing about him. I don’t think anybody better could have done it.
Of course, my mom would have like to have been shown as the person that was with my dad from late ’88/’89 all up until a year before his passing. She was the one that was there through all of NWA. None of those things were shown.
Since the movie came out, Dee Barnes has spoken out about Dr. Dre being abusive toward her. Of course, you had nothing to do with this but as a part of the NWA family basically, how are you reading into this?
I haven’t really paid attention to what other people have to say. I didn’t even know anything about that, and I was only 4 when my father passed away. As far as all of their individual personal lives, I don’t know much about it.
Do you recall anything about that time?
Absolutely. I lived with my dad, and even though I’m a girl and was a baby, I literally was like his little mini-me. I went everywhere with my dad. I spent a lot of time in his office, I spent a lot of time in the studio, a lot of time at home. I remember him being very playful, and that’s what I’m actually most happy about in this movie. You get to see a lot of his personality shine through. A lot of people didn’t know that he was actually funny and a prankster and very witty. They just know that he’s this little gangster, but they didn’t know the more personal side of him.
What do you think of the misconceptions that the world has about your father?
People think he’s really some terror, some rebel who just didn’t care about anything, and really he did. He was the voice of the people. He did care about everyone, and that’s why he used his influence to shed light on things that were happening that were wrong and really making something of himself, putting Compton on the map.
You see all the success that Dr. Dre and Ice Cube have had up until this day. People think that even if you are some gangster and hustler that you don’t have a character and a heart. All my life, the main stories that I’ve heard about my dad are about him being so funny and so loving and genuine, and that’s from my own personal family and from a lot of his business associates.