‘City of Lies’ Reopens the Biggie Smalls Case, Again

Posted May 21, 2018 8:41 p.m. EDT

Who shot Biggie Smalls? More than 20 years after the rapper’s death, that question still remains open. A recent USA Network limited series, “Unsolved: The Murders of Tupac and the Notorious B.I.G.,” dramatized the story, and now a film about the case, “City of Lies,” has just gotten its first trailer.

Johnny Depp stars as a police detective, Russell Poole (played by Jimmi Simpson in the TV series), and Forest Whitaker is Jack Jackson, a journalist who probes Poole’s allegations that the Los Angeles Police Department was involved in a conspiracy related to the killing.

Depp has in recent years mostly done period costume pieces like “Murder on the Orient Express” and the “Pirates of the Caribbean” series, but he’s no stranger to the true-crime genre. He played the Boston mobster Whitey Bulger in “Black Mass” (2015) and the titular undercover agent in “Donnie Brasco” (1997). For Whitaker, “City of Lies” represents a departure from the sci-fi blockbusters like “Black Panther” and “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” that have dominated his résumé lately.

Directed by Brad Furman (“The Lincoln Lawyer”), “City of Lies” hits theaters on Sept. 7.