It was 22 years today, that Hype Williams’ 1998 Belly was released!
Starring Nas and DMX, Belly follows the life of Tommy Bunds (DMX) and Sincere (Nas). The two get by as professional criminals, but while DMX is fine, Nas’ role is looking to better himself and move his family ‘back to Africa’.
The film’s star-studded cast included Taral Hicks, T-Boz of TLC, Method Man, AZ, Louis Rankin, and Oliver “Power” Grant with cameos from Ghostface Killah and Sean Paul.
The movie was poorly received by critics, but the movie reached the millennials who were soon to take the reigns of pop culture. Belly created an image that's emulated by the next generation of rappers. Led by Jay-Z, Dip Set, and even A$AP Mob have glamorized the film, which also spawned one of the greatest Hip Hop movie soundtracks, featuring D’Angelo, Mya, Raekwon, N.O.R.E., Jay-Z, Beanie Sigel, Memphis Bleek, Wu-Tang Clan, and the film’s stars themselves. The soundtrack peaked at #5 on the Billboard 200 and #2 Top R&B/Hip Hop chart making it one of the highest-charting Hip-Hop film soundtracks.