Violence Mars Notorious Opening, 1 Man Shot & 4 Stabbed In Separate Incidents
Five men were rushed to the hospital this weekend in two separate events connected to the opening of the film Notorious – the highly-anticipated biopic of beloved Brooklyn rapper Biggie Smalls.
North Carolina paper the News & Record reports that a man was shot in the stomach during the premiere of the movie on Friday night (Jan. 16). Seven hundred people were evacuated from Greensboro’s Grand 18 Theater, resulting in chaos as movie goers rushed to the exit.
The victim, identified as Clive O’Connor, 32, is currently recuperating in the hospital after undergoing surgery. No one was been arrested in connection to the incident as of press time.
Authorities said Jamal Woolard, the rapper-tuned-actor who portrays Big in the movie, was reportedly in the theater when the shooting took place. He was unharmed.
While Greensboro police Lt. James Hinson said they can’t say for sure if the gunfire had anything to do with the film, a representative for The Grand 18 has confirmed that all additional showings of Notorious have been suspended indefinitely.
"We can't say whether or not this shooting is in direct relationship to the movie,” he said. “We just can't say."
Meanwhile in Biggie’s hometown of Brooklyn four men were stabbed in an after-party for the flick. According to the Associated Press the fracas erupted in The Djumbala club in Canarsie.
Police say all four men were taken to Brookdale Hospital. One 21-year old is in critical condition after suffering multiple stab wounds.
Dubbed as the film’s official after party, Fox Searchlight - the movie’s distributors - denies any relation to the event.
Notorious tells the story of the late rap legend Biggie Smalls. Executive-produced by former right hand man Sean "Diddy" Combs, the film stars Derek Luke, Angela Basset and Anthony Mackie. – Elan Mancini