On November 4, 1998, music video virtuoso Hype Williams made his feature film directorial debut with Belly, a gritty New York crime tale starring Nas, DMX, and T-Boz. While not a hit with critics, it was (rightfully) given the title of "hood classic," joining films like Boyz n the Hood and Menace II Society.
Twenty years to the day of its release, Hype, Nas, and T-Boz touched down at ComplexCon 2018 to close out the ComplexCon(versations) series with an in-depth discussion on Belly and its legacy.
Headed up by Complex's editor-in-chief and VP of content and development, Damien Scott, this discussion dove head first into everything you didn't know about Belly, from the rapper people thought should've played Buns instead of DMX to Hype wanting DMX and Nas to get oily during one scene to how the soundtrack was crafted. Hype also announced plans to get Belly re-released in theaters, on IMAX, along with a commemorative re-release of the Belly soundtrack.
For those of you who remember what it was like to see Belly on theater screens back in 1998, along with the many of you who have been impacted by this film's visuals to this day, here's a look back at one of the greatest hip-hop films of all time.