Interview with No-Malice (formerly of the rap group Clipse) at Cinemark Mall St. Mathews in Louisville, KY, February 16, 2016. Videographer Remone Wilkerson of B-Nu Films.
On Tuesday, February 16, 2016, platinum selling Virginia rapper “No Malice” premiered his new film, The End of Malice, at Cinemark Mall St. Mathews in Louisville, KY. The 7:30 p.m. – 8:45 p.m. screening featured a meet-and-greet with the rapper as well as a Q&A discussion following the viewing of the film.
The film screening was a collaboration between Second Films and Louisville’s St. Stephen Church. The youth group of St. Stephen Church, headed by Langston Gaither would also host the event alongside “No Malice”.
No-Malice was once half of the super rap group “Clipse” and is known for his drug dealing inspired raps – but the famed lyricist has walked away from secular hip-hop and now only records music with positive themes.Watch Full Movie Online Streaming Online and Download
43 year-old Gene Elliott Thornton Jr. aka “Malice” and his brother, 38 year-old Terrance Thornton aka “Pusha-T”, exploded on the rap scene in 2002, with their smash hits “Grindin” and “When Was The Last Time”. These singles helped push their debut album, Lord Willin’, to platinum status.
The album featured production from their childhood friends the Neptunes (Pharrell Williams & Chad Hugo) and laid the foundation for a catalog that many hip-hop connoisseurs consider to be legendary.
Based on the elaborate tales of drug dealing throughout their music – the group is credited with ushering in a sub-genre of hip-hop, labeled “coke-rap”.
“No Malice” was originally born in the Bronx but his family relocated to Virginia Beach, VA while he was still a youth. It wasn’t long before he found himself caught up in the fast life of hustling and selling drugs.
In 1994, the Thornton brothers formed the rap group “Clipse” and with the help of Pharrell Williams – were signed to Elektra Records in 1996.
Coming from the gritty streets of Virginia Beach, their music heavily focused on the drug trade, fast cars and fast women.
The duo released the album Exclusive Audio Footage in 1996, which would create a huge local buzz but didn’t gain the national attention anticipated. Clipse was released from its Elektra recording contract shortly after the album’s debut.
Never possessing the characters of quitters, the brothers continued creating music and eventually honed their skills. In 2001, Pharrell Williams signed the Clipse to Arista Records via his Star Trak Entertainment record label and from that point, there was no turning back.
The Clipse would release the platinum selling album Lord Willing in 2002, the popular mixtape series The Re-up Gang:We Got It 4 Cheap (2004-2008), and the gold selling album Hell Hath No Fury in 2006. The brothers would later release an official self-entitled Re-Up Gang album in 2008, and the final Clipse album in 2009.
Although their mainstream success was fairly limited – Clipse gained a cult-like following of core fans that specifically patronized underground hip-hop.
Their intricate wordplay, masterful gift of storytelling and extensive knowledge of the streetlife – placed them in the category of “lyricists” rather than just rappers.
Based on the heavy drug dealing content in their music, many hip-hop fans assumed that the rap group had ties to major drug trafficking organizations.
In 2009, those assumptions were confirmed when the ex-manager of the Clipse, Anthony “Geezy” Gonzalez, was charged with leading a $10 Million drug organization.
Although records show that Clipse hadn’t been managed by Gonzalez since 2006, rumors circulated that Malice and Pusha-T would soon be federally indicted.
Fortunately, when the smoke cleared, the brothers were never implicated in the vast drug trafficking conspiracy. Gonzalez, however, was sentenced to 32 years in federal prison in 2010, and that moment would change the life of Malice forever.
In 2010, the brothers announced that they were working on solo projects but in 2011, Malice shocked the hip-hop world when he released the book Wretched, Pitiful, Poor, Blind & Naked.
The book is essentially a memoir of his life and revealed the fact that he had become a Christian back in 2008. He changed his name from “Malice” to “No-Malice” and confessed that he mentally struggled with committing right and wrong acts throughout his entire life.
He proudly proclaimed to have finally surrendered his life over to Christ, allowing God to assist with fighting his daily temptations.
“The desire to change… When I had done all the checks and balances and just took inventory of my own life, I had already come to that conclusion and then when that happened [Anthony Gonzalez being arrested], I really looked at it as a personal, spiritual attack… Like so now everybody thinks this is why I’m changing my life around, when really that was just something added to what I was already thinking.” – No Malice
Many have questioned whether there will be a Clipse reunion in the future but No-Malice emphatically dismisses the possibility. He insists that he will never make music again that advocates harming another individual.
However, No-Malice does have plans on releasing new music for his devoted fans and assures the hip-hop community that it will be something very reminiscent of his previous work, just without the negative connotations.
He has also produced a film entitled “The End of Malice”. The 40 minute documentary featuring No Malice, Pusha-T, and Pharrell Williams details his upbringing, the rise of the rap group “Clipse”, and his conversion to Christianity.
“The film is the ‘End of Malice’ and it basically chronicles my life in the industry, family life, a lot of personal scenarios and my transition to where I am now.” – No Malice
No-Malice is currently on a 16 city tour in which he hosts screenings for the film at local movie theatres. No-Malice views the film with the audience and holds a Q&A discussion session with movie-goers after the viewing.
Concluding the film screening tour, “The End of Malice” will air on Revolt TV on Sunday March 27, 2016.
Tickets for future End of Malice screenings can be purchased at http://www.endofmalice.com/screenings.
The End of Malice movie trailer shown below.