Jerry Heller, former N.W.A. manager and man clearly not concerned with seeing movies during their opening week to stay on the pulse of culture, recently hinted at possible litigation stemming from the critical and commercial juggernaut Straight Outta Compton.
"My only comment so far is that I think it’s inappropriate for me to comment on a movie that I haven’t seen,” Heller tells the Los Angeles Times. "I did see it on Saturday, and I’m still not willing to comment right now on that movie because I think sooner or later it may be part of an ongoing litigation.” Prior to the biopic's release, Heller revealed to TMZ that "at least two" of his lawyers would be attending a screening of the film with him. Heller is portrayed in the film by confirmed great Paul Giamatti, adding a surprising layer of sympathy to the film's poetic end for the notorious Ruthless Records co-founder. In an interview with Grantland earlier this month, Heller revealed he had not been consulted in any way during the film's creation.
Straight Outta Compton most recently inspired controversy surrounding the omission of Dr. Dre's assault of Dee Barnes and other similar incidents, an oversight Barnes directly confronted in a telling essay. Both Dre and Apple eventually issued statements indirectly responding to Barnes' essay, implying that the past, for them, would firmly remain exactly that: the past. An earlier copy of the Compton script revealed that a version of the Barnes assault was originally intended for inclusion, though even that attempt at addressing an overlooked aspect of the narrative was tellingly mired in Dre-favoring fabrications.