Ranking 2Pac's Movie Roles

Tupac Shakur is better known for his impact as a musician, but he was also a great actor. Here's a definitive ranking of 2Pac's performances as an actor.

Tupac Movie Roles
Complex Original


Tupac Movie Roles

Across four solo albums, six posthumous studio albums, and an astounding 14 posthumous compilation releases, there is certainly enough material on which to judge the music career of Tupac Amaru Shakur. The same can't be said about his career as an actor, however. Even though three movies he starred in were released after he passed away 20 years ago today, on Sept. 13, 1996, it's very clear that we never got to see 2Pac the Actor reach his full potential.


All of the charisma and passion that Pac poured into his music were magnified by his dynamic acting ability. Theater was always a part of Pac’s life. He performed on the Apollo Theater stage at age 12 (in a rendition of A Raisin In the Sun) and attended the renowned Baltimore School for the Arts, where he did Shakespeare and even played the Mouse King in The Nutcracker. That high school is also where he met lifelong friend Jada Pinkett Smith, whom he eventually acted alongside in an episode of A Different World

While his career as an actor only spanned seven movies, Pac really shined when he hit the big screen. In Poetic Justice, he brought compassion to the role of Lucky, showing a hard-working, common-sense side to inner-city men that Hollywood had been neglecting. As Bishop in Juice, he embodied the cold and sinister side of street life. He even played a detective in his last performance on film, as Jake Rodriguez in Gang Related. With the world looking back at Pac’s legacy 20 years after his death, let's not forget about the reflect on the too-few times we got to see Tupac act. Here, we break down Pac's seven film performances down and rank them from worst to best so you don't have to. 

8. Nothing But Trouble (1991)

Nothing But Trouble Tupac

7. Gang Related (1997)

Gang Related Tupac

6. Above the Rim (1994)

Above the Rim Tupac

5. Bullet (1996)

Bullet Tupac

4. Poetic Justice (1993)

Poetic Justice Tupac

3. Gridlock'd (1997)

Gridlockd Tupac

2. Juice (1992)

Juice Tupac

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