TRAGEDY: THE STORY OF QUEENSBRIDGE
Feature documentary, 2005. Official selection NXNE, Slamdance, H2O, Moffom, Pop Montreal.
After documenting a conflicts around the world, Booker Sim turned to the war zone in New York’s infamous Queensbridge Houses, NYC’s largest housing projects.
But beyond violence, he discovered the richest legacy in hip-hop, home of The Juice Crew, Nas, Mobb Deep, CNN and the realest rapper of them all: TRAGEDY. Tragedy’s story is unique, in that he lived every great Queensbridge moment. So in telling his story, he’s telling the story of his hood.
While still in his mother’s womb, Tragedy’s dad is shot dead. Thirteen years later, with his mom hooked on smack, Trag hustles to survive. But the kid’s a rap genius, and is signed to the world famous Juice Crew…till he’s busted, sent to Riker’s Island at 16!
Trag emerges political…releasing his INTELLIGENT HOODLUM album, featuring the controversial track “Arrest the President.” ‘Nuff respect, but he’s eclipsed by young Queensbridge MC Nas with a style borrowed from his own.
Trag falls prey to the streets…where he discovers teen rappers Capone-N-Noreaga – CNN. And after dissing Snoop Dogg during the East-Coast/West-Coast beef, they get a record deal. Trag is hailed as a genius for masterminding CNN’s geo-political WAR REPORT album.
Capone is busted and Noreaga finds stardom, leaving Trag to starve. Then Trag’s mom overdoses on heroin. Trag once again turns to the streets for inspiration, transforming pain to beauty on autobiographical underground album STILL REPORTING, with spine tingling odes to his mother.
Trag meets Noreaga to talk about a movie deal they’ve been offered…but cops pull up on ‘em, throwing Trag in jail. Out on bail, Trag is still reporting from the hood, still keeping it real in Queensbridge. Sure, Tragedy’s life IS a tragedy. But through hip-hop, he triumphs.
Written, directed, co-produced and co-edited by Booker Sim. Produced and edited by Malcolm Hearn. Official selection: Slamdance, NXNE, Pop Montreal, H2O and Moffom. Aired on Fuse TV, with international distribution by Vision Films.
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