Mario Van Peebles to direct Salt-N-Pepa biopic

“New Jack City” director Mario Van Peebles will be directing Lifetime’s highly anticipated 3-hour biopic on the female rap group Salt-N-Pepa. The series which stars GG Townson (“In the Cut”) as Cheryl “Salt” James, Laila Odom (“The Bobby DeBarge Story”) as Sandra “Pepa” Denton is currently in production in Toronto and stars Cleveland Berto as music producer “Hurby Azor,” Jermel Howard as rapper “Treach” and Monique Paul stars as “DJ Spinderella.”

Salt-N-Pepa with DJ Spinderella (C) in 1987
Salt-N-Pepa with DJ Spinderella (C) in 1987

The miniseries will follow the story of Queensborough Community College students Cheryl “Salt” James and Sandra “Pepa” Denton as they fall into the world of rap and hip hop, after recording for a song for their friend Hurby Azor. 

Mario Van Peebles
Mario Van Peebles

Salt-N-Pepa made a huge impact in hip hop by being one of the first all-female rap groups, changing the look of hip hop and unafraid to talk about sex and share their thoughts on men and became the first female rap act to go platinum and experienced ground-breaking success with multiple awards, including a Grammy, paving the way for all female rappers to follow. The miniseries will also feature their greatest hits like “Let’s Talk About Sex,” “What a Man,” “Shoop” and “Push It,” among others.

(L to R) Cleveland Berto, Monique Paul & Jermel Howard
(L to R) Cleveland Berto, Monique Paul & Jermel Howard

Airing on Lifetime in 2020, Salt-n-Pepa is produced by Sony Pictures Television. The biopic is also executive produced by Cheryl James, Sandra Denton, Shakim Compere, Queen Latifah and is co-executive produced by James “Jimmy” Maynes and Hurby Azor.

Samantha Ofole-Prince is a journalist and movie critic who covers industry-specific news that includes television and film. She serves as the Entertainment Editor for Trendy Africa.

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