A&E’s ‘Biography’ Returns and Looks at the Fascinating Life of Notorious B.I.G.

Notorious BIG @A&E

The return of the seminal Biography series begins with an intimate examination of the life and death of the rapper Notorious B.I.G. In the gritty and unflinchingly honest three-hour special, the artist — born Christopher Wallace — narrates his life story from beyond the grave through archival footage and never-before-heard audio recordings. He vividly recounts his humble beginnings in Brooklyn as a street-smart drug dealer and weaves a transfixing tale of life in the ’hood as a charming wanna-be MC.

Perhaps the most astonishing aspect of the documentary is Wallace’s explanation of his friendship with fellow rapper Tupac Shakur and his frustration and disappointment that the media twisted their creative rivalry into a bicoastal rap war that ultimately turned bloody for both men. (Later in 2017, A&E will air the miniseries Who Killed Tupac?) Also strongly featured in the special are the people who knew Biggie best — including his widow, Faith Evans; his protective mother, Voletta Wallace; his friends and fellow Junior M.A.F.I.A. crew; collaborators and his contemporaries Sean “Diddy” Combs, Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter and Nas — who all share intimate and revealing interviews.

Biography: Biggie: The Life of Notorious B.I.G. > A&E > Airs Sept. 4 at 8pm ET/PT