Fans of Ice Cube will be thrilled to know that a new Barbershop movie will be hitting theaters across the country Friday, April 15. “Barbershop: The Next Cut” is the third installment in the “Barbershop” franchise. The world premiere of the MGM-New Line film was held Wednesday night at the TCL Chinese Theatre.
In the mid-1980s, O’Shea “Ice Cube” Jackson was a member of the South Central L.A.-based group N.W.A. with Dr. Dre, and Eazy-E. The group is largely credited with helping put gangsta rap on the map. By the early-’90s, he had branched out into movies, performing in the hit crime film “Boyz n the Hood.” He also starred in “Anaconda” with Jennifer Lopez and the wildly popular “Friday” trilogy.
The original “Barbershop,” released in 2002, featured Ice Cube as the owner of an inner city Chicago barbershop named Calvin. The movie revolved around the barbershop being a place where workers and customers could share a laugh and talk about the issues affecting their lives. In an interview, Ice Cube, 46, spoke about the theme, saying, “What’s so cool about the barbershop is it shows that black people don’t all have the same opinion about the same issues. It shows that if you throw a topic up, there are all kinds of different opinions.”
Ice Cube reprised his role in “Barbershop 2: Back in Business,” released in 2004. This new film comes twelve years after the first one and aims to reflect on how the subject’s lives have evolved over the intervening years. Cedric the Entertainer, Jazsmin Lewis, Sean Patrick Thomas and Eve have also been in all three films. People that loved the previous films may be surprised to see that the new film has women cutting women’s hair in the shop as well as men cutting men’s hair, with lots of conversations and joking between the sexes.
The theme of gun violence is a prominent one in the story. The new film is still a comedy, but is a bit more serious when the topic is gun violence and gangs. In a phone interview Ice Cube said, “We wanted to re-energize this franchise with a real story, and not just a whole bunch of laughs.” Kenya Barris wrote the screenplay for the movie with Tracy Oliver.
Malcolm D. Lee, the director of “Barbershop: The Next Cut,” has a long history in the movie industry. During his undergraduate studies at Georgetown, he worked on movies with his cousin, director Spike Lee, who lived in the same home with him and his family. After graduating, Mr. Lee attended film school at New York University and worked as a production assistant on Spike Lee’s “School Daze” and “Do the Right Thing.” He also worked with his cousin on “Malcolm X.”