watch the new netflix trailer about the girl who invented the diss track

The new biopic profiles Roxanne Shanté, the teenage MC who carved up New York’s rap battle scene in the 80s.

by Georgie Wright
22 February 2018, 5:48pm

Image via Youtube

In the early 1980s, a teenage MC called Roxanne Shanté was carving up the New York rap battle scene. She pretty much invented the diss track: in 1984, producer Marley Marl got her to rap on an instrumental of a UTFO song, Roxanne Roxanne. While the original was about a woman rejecting them, her version -- Roxanne’s Revenge -- flipped the narrative, with Roxanne essentially saying that sorry huns, you’re just not good enough. But a lot more explicitly. The track blew up and so did Roxanne.

Now Netflix are premiering biopic of her. But it’s not just about the music and the beef -- it’s about the drugs, the hustle, the money, the family, the relationships, the cars, the everything. The film -- also called Roxanne Roxanne -- premiered at Sundance last year and is written and directed by Michael J. Larnell (the protegee of none other than Spike Lee). Roxanne Shanté is played by Chanté Adams, who won the 2017 Sundance Special Jury Award for Breakthrough Performance. It’s out on 23 March (a Friday if you want to plan a sick day accordingly).

Roxanne Shante
Roxanne Roxanne
chante adams
Michael J. Larnell