Shameik Moore: Dope Jamaican

Shameik Moore: Dope Jamaican

Written by Editor

Topics: Film & Theatre, Music

According to Vanity Fair’s July 2015 issue, 20-year-old singer, dancer and actor Shameik Moore’s breakout performance in the Sundance hit Dope is “reminiscent of Tom Cruise’s in Risky Business”. The buzz surrounding the film has also landed Moore a spot on Indiewire’s list of “The 12 Major Breakouts of the 2015 Sundance Film Festival”. Dope, which is produced by Academy award winner Forest Whitaker, and Grammy award winners Sean “P Diddy” Combs and Pharrell Williams, is written and directed by Rick Famuyiwa – who is best known for The Wood, Brown Sugar and Our Family Wedding.

The film is set in the 90s, in Inglewood, California. It is a coming-of-age flick which follows the life of a nerd who gets accidentally caught up in the unsavoury side of the lower-income community, Bottoms. The film, which is rate R, opened wide on June 19 and stars Kimberly Elise, Chanel Iman, Tyga, Zoe Kravitz, and A$AP Rocky.

In a recent appearance on ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live Moore said he was a first generation American in a Jamaican family. “The whole village is Jamaican… my mom, dad, grandma, brothers, sisters, cousins, aunties, everybody.” Kimmel curiously inquired of Moore what it was like to be yelled at by his mom in a Jamaican accent. A smiling Moore responded “It’s scary”, after which he shared a typical scolding meted out at him while growing up. “Shameik siddung inna yuh seat nuh bwoy. Di bwoy deh jus ah talk so. Be quiet nuh”. He said his mother works in orthopedics and his father is a reggae musician who has travelled with Maxi Priest and Inner Circle.

Moore’s natural ability to mimic musical patterns at an early age prompted his parents to enroll him into the Dekalb Elementary School of The Arts in Atlanta, Georgia to study acting. He also went on to study dance, modelling and acting at Chyme’s Dance Studio. Similar to Canadian popstar Justin Bieber’s journey to stardom, Moore showcased his talents on YouTube in a webseries he created – Meaksworld.

The YouTube channel host his recent single Back It Up, which displays his dance skills as well as his vocal talent. This single follows the popular Rock Wit Me off Moore’s mixtape, I Am Da Beat. The multitalented youngster was a member of the cast of Nick Cannon and Cartoon Network’s sketch-comedy series, Incredible Crew, which lasted one season. Moore has been casted as one of the male leads in Baz Luhrmann’s eagerly anticipated Netflix musical drama series The Get Down, which is set to premiere in 2016. Veteran actors Giancarlo Esposito and Jimmy Smits have also signed on as series regulars.

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