Birthdate: July 6, 1975
Birthplace: Queens, New York City, New York, USA
50 Cent, aka Curtis Jackson (birthname: Curtis James Jackson III) is one of the most iconic hip-hop artists of his generation, and who has had one of the most active movie careers among his peers in the music who have attempted similar crossover career moves.
While “50 Cent” has been his rap handle, Jackson has generally used his birthname for his movie credits, sometimes including “50 Cent” as an inserted nickname middle name. Jackson’s feature debut was the star of the Jim Sheridan-directed crime drama, Get Rich or Die Tryin’ (2005), based in part on episodes from his life as written by Sopranos lead writer Terence Winter, and co-starring Terrence Howard, Joy Bryant, Bill Duke, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, and Viola Davis. Jackson co-starred in director/writer/producer Irwin Winkler’s military drama, Home of the Brave (2006), which was a bomb for co-producer and distributor MGM.
Curtis Jackson continued his acting work with Hollywood’s crème de la crème with the Jon Avent-directed drama, Righteous Kill (2008), starring Robert De Niro and Al Pacino, with Carla Gugino, Donnie Wahlberg, Brian Dennehy, and John Leguizamo. Jackson unfortunately co-starred in another box-office failure, the Joel Schumacher-directed teen drama, Twelve (2010), with Chace Crawford, Rory Culkin, and Emma Roberts, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival.
With Georgian filmmaker Géla Babluani, who was director/co-writer/co-editor of 13 (2010), the English-language remake of his Georgian crime thriller, 13 Tzameti (2005), Jackson co-starred with the brawny cast of Jason Statham, Sam Riley, Ray Winstone, Mickey Rourke, and Alexander Skarsgård, and which premiered at the SXSW film festival.
Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson starred in and was screenwriter and producer of the indie crime drama, Gun (2010), co-starring Val Kilmer, and with AnnaLynne McCord, James Remar, Danny Trejo, and John Larroquette, and directed by Jessy Terrero. Jackson appeared as himself in the Roger Michell-directed comedy-drama, Morning Glory (2010), starring Rachel McAdams, Harrison Ford, Diane Keaton, Patrick Wilson, and Jeff Goldblum, but failed to make a solid box-office return for Paramount Pictures with a weak $60 million return.
Jackson reunited with director Terrero for the action movie, Freelancers (2012), co-starring Forest Whitaker and Robert De Niro, with Matt Gerald, Robert Wisdom, Dana Delaney, and Vinnie Jones, but losing millions for Lionsgate. In another money-loser for Lionsgate, Jackson co-starred as 50 Cent in writer-director Scott Walker’s serial killer drama, The Frozen Ground (2013), starring Nicolas Cage, John Cusack, and Vanessa Hudgens.
Curtis Jackson finally enjoyed a solid hit as actor-only with Escape Plan (2013), starring Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jim Caviezel, Jones, Vincent D’Onofrio, Amy Ryan, and Sam Neill, and proving enough of a hit ($137.3 million on a $54 million budget) to generate two sequels--Escape Plan 2: Hades (2018), co-starring Stallone and Dave Bautista (but failing at the box office), and
Escape Plan: The Extractors (2019), with Jackson billed as co-star with Stallone and Bautista, and earning a good box office in a mix of theatrical and home video releases. After appearing in a cameo as himself in Last Vegas (2013), co-starring Michael Douglas, De Niro, Morgan Freeman, Kevin Kline, and Mary Steenburgen, Jackson was cast in a supporting role in the Brian A. Miller-directed thriller, The Prince (2014), co-starring Jason Patric, Bruce Willis, and Cusack, and once again losing millions in returns for Lionsgate. Once again, Jackson played himself in a small role in writer-director-producer Paul Feig’s hit action comedy, Spy (2015), starring Melissa McCarthy, Jason Statham, Rose Byrne, and Jude Law.
Curtis Jackson co-starred in one of his most successful studio releases with Jake Gyllenhaal, Forest Whitaker, Rachel McAdams, and Naomie Harris in the Antoine Fuqua-directed boxing drama, Southpaw (2015), grossing $94 million worldwide. Jackson enjoyed a cameo as himself in the Andy Samberg (as star/co-writer/co-producer with Judd Apatow) mockumentary, Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping (2016), co-starring Jorma Taccone and Akiva Schaffer (both co-directors and co-writers), and with Sarah Silverman and Tim Meadows.
Jackson joined another hit project as co-star of writer-director Christian Gudegast’s heist thriller, Den of Thieves (2018), with Gerard Butler, Pablo Schreiber, and O’Shea Jackson Jr., and earned $80 million. Curtis Jackson (as 50 Cent) joined the high-powered cast of Jason Statham, Sylvester Stallone, Megan Fox, Dolph Lundgren, Tony Jaa, Iko Uwais, Randy Couture, and Andy Garcia in the Scott Waugh-directed action sequel, Expend4bles (2023), the fourth entry in the Expendables franchise.
Jackson co-starred with Mel Gibson in the crime thriller from writer-director Asif Akbar, Boneyard (date to be announced), and then Jackson co-starred with Neal McDonough in writer-director Josh Stolberg’s horror-satire skewering social media, Skill House (date to be announced). Jackson had star billing on writer-director Deon Taylor’s sports-themed heist drama for Lionsgate, Free Agents (date to be announced).
50 Cent was born and raised Curtis Jackson in Jamaica, Queens in the New York City area by a single mother, Sabrina Jackson, who died in a fire when Jackson was eight years old. Jackson was raised by his grandparents. He attended grade and middle schools and Andrew Jackson High School in the Jamaica area. A year after he started boxing at a local gym for young people, Jackson began to deal drugs and was arrested for possession in high school, and then again when he was 18, selling to an undercover cop.
He did time in a boot camp, and then adopted the name “50 Cent” (inspired by Brooklyn robber Kelvin Martin) as a metaphor for and a play on the word “change.” Starting in 1996, Jackson had a relationship with Shaniqua Tompkins, with whom he had his first son, Marquise; the couple separated, but has maintained a very public feud since. Jackson had a brief relationship with actor Vivica A. Fox then had a longer relationship with model Daphne Joy, with whom he had his second son, Sire. Jackson’s height is 6’. Jackson’s estimated net worth is $40 million.
Teetotaller: 50 Cent neither drinks nor smokes.
Rich Baby: 50 Cent’s youngest son, Sire, earned $700,000 as a two-year-old model for an ad campaign promoting headphones for children.
Ninja Cent: 50 Cent arranged a photo for the cover of his album, “The Massacre,” to make him resemble one of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, his son Sire’s favorite cartoon characters.
Street Artist: 50 Cent is revered in the hip-hop community for continuing to release street mixtapes, which is how he got his break, being signed to Eminem’s label after the rap superstar heard one.