Born: 6 July 1975
Best known as: The rapper who made the hit album Get Rich or Die Tryin
<p>Name at birth: Curtis Jackson</p>Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson's 2003 album Get Rich or Die Tryin' was a top-seller, propelled by the hit song "In Da Club" and by support from hip-hop superstars Eminem and Dr. Dre. 50 Cent's troubled past was part of the package: he was raised by his grandparents after his drug-dealing mother died, and in 2000 he survived being shot 9 times. Before his mainstream breakthrough he was popular in clubs and on the streets, thanks to locally distributed tapes. Although it didn't get national airplay, his Power of a Dollar (1999) was an underground hit, as was his earlier single "Thug Love." But it was Get Rich or Die Tryin', with its groove-rich tales of thugs, drugs, money and ambition, that made him a national and international star. The album has sold more than 8 million copies since its release. His second album, 2005's The Massacre, was almost overshadowed by 50 Cent's public feud with fellow rapper and protegé, The Game. Between the gunfire, feuds and hit singles, Rolling Stone magazine was moved to call 50 Cent "in many ways the ideal East Coast hardcore rapper." His later albums include Before I Self Destruct (2009) and Animal Ambition (2014). His autobiography, From Pieces to Weight, was published in 2005. 50 Cent has also made his mark as a businessman, primarily through his G-Unit entertainment company, which he founded as a record label in 2003. He also became a boxing promoter through is company SMS Promotions, founded the film production company Cheetah Vision, and became a celebrity spokesman for (and investor in) the bottled water company Glacéau, designing his own grape-flavored Formula 50. That company was bought by Coca-Cola for $4.1 billion in 2007, and Forbes magazine reported at the time that "Fiddy's estimated take from that sale, after taxes [was] $100 million." However, 50 Cent filed for bankruptcy in 2015, saying that his assets of nearly $50 million didn't cover his liabilities.
50 Cent is often called by his nickname, “Fiddy”… 50 Cent says in his autobiography that he borrowed his name from a local robber, a “stickup kid from Brooklyn”… The rapper announced in March of 2003 that he’d had a special bullet-proof jacket made for his six-year-old son… 50 Cent swapped insults with rapper Ja Rule in an ongoing public feud throughout the early 2000s.
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