Black Samurai is a historical film on Yasuke, Nobunaga’s bodyguard.
Lupe Fiasco being a massive weeb is no secret – he’s rapped about anime and Japanese culture since before he got signed to Atlantic Records in 2005. His mixtape series, Revenge of the Nerds is proof of this, so it’s likely he’s been into gaming and anime since early childhood. Starring in Black Samurai may shock some, but it wouldn’t to me. Many claim that black weebs are the biggest weebs of them all. Maybe true. Maybe not. Lupe being a massive nerd shouldn’t be up for debate though. For example, he references Lupin the Third on Kanye West’s Touch the Sky. A more recent example? He regularly watches livestreams of Street Fighter tournaments and even attends them when it works with his schedule. Not as a celebrity appearance, but just as a fan of the community and game (even though SFV is absolute garbage, no kappa). He did have an exhibition match against Daigo Umehara too.
Lupe posted photos of him in traditional Japanese attire training with a katana (Japanese sword) back in January and just a few days ago posted this video of his training:
Who else could be cast for Black Samurai?
There are plenty of rappers that are into nerd culture in the same scope of Lupe, but not many that would try their hand at acting. Even though we can’t quite see Common as Yasuke, the 1st black samurai, he’s being cast into a separately developed TV series. Too soft for the role, we think. Part of me wants to see a Wu Tang Clan member for the Black Samurai film, but I doubt it would happen. Meth and Red are terrible actors, known for their brief dip into comedy. The RZA could have potential for a role like this, but The Man with the Iron Fists was a dud. Awful Records’ Father is known for loving hentai, but he’s got too much of an introverted personality to be a strong actor.
Of course, it doesn’t have to be a rapper for the main role.
Maybe we’ll be blessed by a Michael K. Williams performance! 🔥
Lupe though? The movie casting is not confirmed but #SamuraiLupe was making waves on Twitter after his training video was posted. If Lupe wasn’t in the running for the role, I bet he is now.
Who was Yasuke, the first black samurai, anyway?
There are conflicting accounts of Yasuke’s origins, but historically speaking, it isn’t debated that he served as Oda Nobunaga’s bodyguard. This would make him the first black samurai, but how he got to Japan in the first place isn’t clear. Apparently, seeing black people was so rare at the time that they were admired rather than discriminated against like in modern Japan. Yasuke’s black skin fascinated Nobunaga, convinced that it had been dyed with black ink.
The script for Black Samurai is being written by the creator of Highlander, Gregory Widen. In an interview with Deadline, Widen said that he’s chosen a single account of Yasuke’s history rather than adapting his own from the many sources available.
“The one I’ve chosen is that he was a slave soldier after the fall of Abysinnian Bengal, a black kingdom run by Ethiopians. He was sold into slavery and found himself in the care of Alessandro Valignano, an Italian missionary. They formed a bond, and when there were complications in Rome, he was sent to Japan and took Yasuke with him. There he met Oda Nobunaga, who was interested in all Western things, and through a series of bizarre events, the Jesuit left Yasuke with the warlord.”