Paramount+ to premiere new doc about rap music on trial next month


A new documentary about the use of rap lyrics in court rooms and on trial will premiere on Paramount+ next month.

The streamer announced¬†As We Speak: Rap Music on Trial, which follows Bronx rapper¬†Kemba¬†as he explores the “growing weaponization” of rap lyrics in the United States criminal justice system and abroad. His findings¬†will reveal how law enforcement has quietly used the hip-hop art form as evidence in cases for decades, a description of the show says.¬†

The new feature-length documentary saw its world premiere screening at the 2024 Sundance Film Festival. 

“It’s not every day a director gets to meet a once-in-a-generation rap artist like Kemba and then has the opportunity to spotlight him in a film like¬†As we Speak: Rap on Trial,”¬†director¬†J.M. Harper¬†said. “The history of Black lyrics on trial predates hip-hop by hundreds of years, and thanks to the crew at District 33, Park Pictures and Strike Anywhere, we found a way to bring the story of the music to life.”

The first-look trailer gives a glimpse of the film, which includes sit-down interviews with rapper/activist Killer Mike and others. 

As We Speak: Rap Music on Trial premieres Tuesday, February 27, in the U.S. and Canada, and in other countries on Wednesday, February 28.

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