Fans of Bad Boy rap icon, Notorious B.I.G, aka Biggie Smalls will get an up close and personal look into his “controversial” relationship with Grammy-winning singer Faith Evans in tonight’s all new Hopelessly In Love. — Lifetime’s limited docu-series, which chronicles the tumultuous romances of some of Hollywood’s biggest names. The episode has teased deeply emotional interviews, never before-seen footage and more raw moments from their 1994 marriage, which lasted until his death in a drive-by shooting in 1997.
Biggie, whose real name was Christopher Wallace, died on March 9, 1997. As proven by the new docu-series, and many more before it, his legacy lives on. Before tuning in to Hopelessly In Love — airing Friday, January 10 at 9/8c on Lifetime — here are a few things you may not have known about Notorious B.I.G.
He was much more than a rapper. — According to his mother, Voletta Wallace, Biggie had plans to become a graphic designer or a dentist before he got mixed up in the streets. He was a straight “A” student, and won many awards at a young age for his academics.
He wasn’t the first Biggie Smalls. — While Christopher Wallace made the name what it is, we first heard that moniker from the 1975 film Let’s Do It Again; actor Calvin Lockhurt played a character named Biggie Smalls. Calvin actually sued, and Biggie was forced to change his name to Notorious B.I.G.
Diddy discovered him. — In 2002, Diddy saw that Christopher was featured in The Source‘s “Unsigned Hype” column all about aspiring rappers; years later, The Source rated Ready to Die a nearly perfect score of 4.5.
Biggie was one of the few hip-hop artists that recorded with Michael Jackson. — B.I.G. joined Michael in 1995 on “This Time Around.” Six year later, he featured on MJ’s tenth album, Invincible.
B.I.G. went to high school with some of the biggest names in hip hop. — Yes, he went to the same school as JAY-Z and Busta Rhymes and DMX.