Tupac Shakur’s friend Treach remembers their ‘fight’ in landmark movie ‘Juice’
(Credit: Press)

Old School Archives

Tupac Shakur's friend Treach remembers their 'fight' in landmark movie 'Juice'

Tupac Shakur may well be one of the most gifted rapper’s music has ever known, but he is also a classically trained Shakespearean actor. It’s a little known fact that becomes wholly more believable once you’ve seen his starring role in Juice, which celebrated its 30th anniversary this month.

Released in 1992, the crime thriller puts Tupac as Bishop in the Ernest Dickerson-directed film as a group of friends go on a crime spree through Harlem, New York. While a few of the scenes are a little hacky, the film remains a startling reminder of Tupac’s star power.

With a budget of just $100,000, it has since gone on to amass over $20 million, likely down to Tupac’s performance and the iconography attached to it. But while it would be easy to assume that it is the rapper’s unique standing within pop culture that has drawn so many admirers to the feature, the truth is that Pac deliver a showstopping performance. Now, his friend and Naughty By Nature player Treach has shared a candid story from the set of the film.

The story comes from Treach’s interview with Hip Hop DX and sees the music-maker and consummate actor share his tale from the set of the landmark film. Treach recalls being a part of one pivotal scene in the film when Pac’s Bishop is surrounded by a Puerto Rican gang and a confrontation ensues. But it’s not the gang leader Radames that lays hands on Bishop but one of Tupac’s close friends, Treach.

“When you see the movie, you know who I am,” he says. “You’re going to know me because I’m the only dark-skinned guy in the Puerto Rican gang. When you see that you going to be like, ‘Why is this black dude over here?’ No, I said for the movie sake, I was Dominican. It was Uptown. It was actually one part with me and 2Pac when I yanked him up and grabbed him. And it was so funny, he had to hold his smile in.

“Because he looking like, ‘My homie grabbing me? This is so unlike him.’ But he’s a great actor, so he held it until they said cut. And then all of us fell on the ground.” It’s a telling reminder of not only the talent that Tupac had at his disposal but genuine humanity too.