Turns out, playlist-making is a big part of how Williams crafts his characters, including pop culture icons like Omar and Chalky White from Boardwalk Empire. “Music for me is a portal,” Williams told New York Magazine. “Once I’ve gone to that dimension and I’m there, whatever got me there, I just loop those songs.” In the case of both his most-recognized characters, songs by Nas, including the staple "One Mic" in Omar’s case, feature quite prominently. Wonder what he had stocked for his appearance as Professor Kane on Community. Are there any good songs about terrariums?
Vulture’s got the whole Omar playlist, featuring headliners like Biggie, 2Pac, Nas and Lauryn Hill, compiled on Spotify. Check out the track listing and listen to the opening song, 2Pac’s slow-burning "Unconditional Love," below. Goodnight, everybody!
On June 2nd, 2002, David Simon’s Charm City HBO drama The Wire made its debut. A decade later, the show has amassed a large international following—including President Barack Obama, who was a big fan of Michael K. Williams’ Omar Little—and since become a course at Harvard, referenced in Aziz Ansari standup routines and even the subject of a Grantland head-to-head bracket for character supremacy.
Pretty much the only thing The Wire hasn’t become yet is a musical… until now. With the help of much of the original cast, including Michael K. Williams (Omar Little), Felicia Pearson (Felicia "Snoop" Pearson), Larry Gilliard Jr. (D’Angelo Barksdale), Andre Royo (Bubbles) and Sonja Sohn (Det. Kima Greggs), as well as Joe Hartzler as "Jimmy McNulty" and Faizon Love, who wasn’t on The Wire but was in Friday and Elf, among other things, Funny or Die has brought to you, The Wire: The Musical. From opening number "Omar’s Comin’" to the finale, led by a singing syringe, this is truly toe-tappin’ fun. If you don’t go see it, Omar will come for you.
The only thing this musical is missing? More Idris Elba. Watch:
Here’s a casting call destined to blow up the Internet: Michael K. Williams, best known as Omar from The Wire, has just signed on to play Ol’ Dirty Bastard in an upcoming movie called Dirty White Boy. Instead of being a strict biopic, it’ll center on Jarred Weisfeld, "a 22-year-old VH1-intern-turned-manager" who falls in with the rapper, and the fun they have leading up until ODB’s untimely death in 2004. "This felt like Risky Business and 8 Mile, with equal elements of darkness, humor, and humanity," producer Lars Knudsen said in a press release. Those movies make for strange bed fellows, but hey, we’re all eyes and ears.
ODB was a bit of a bulkier guy than Williams, but that’s why they invented Krispy Kreme. More importantly: The Wire and the Wu-Tang! To quote every one of my Facebook friends, "Siiiiiiiiiiiiiiiick." Dirty White Boy is by the team that brought us the Oscar-winning Beginners, which means you’ll probably end up crying at some point — maybe with laughter, when Dirt McGirt jumps on stage at the Grammys to talk about the children.