Carlito Rodriguez and Malcolm Spellman to write a biopic about Sugar Hill Records founder Sylvia Robinson
A film about Sugar Hill Records co-founder and CEO Sylvia Robinson has been announced by Warner Bros. As yet the project is still in its early stages, with the studio taking on Carlito Rodriguez, the former editor-in-chief of hiphop magazine The Source, and producer Malcolm Spellman as its screenwriters. Rodiguez’s screenwriting credits include Empire, the hit US TV drama about the hiphop record industry.
As co-founder of The Sugarhill Gang, Sylvia Robinson is cited as the woman responsible for pushing hiphop into the limelight with The Sugarhill Gang’s massively successful single “Rapper’s Delight” and Grandmaster Flash And The Furious Five’s “The Message”. She began her music career in the early 1950s as Little Sylvia. In the mid–50s she formed the duo Mikey & Sylvia, who made a mark with their 1957 single “Love Is Strange”. In 1979 she founded Sugar Hill Records with her husband Joe Robinson. By the time she died in 2011, Robinson was known as ‘the mother of hiphop’.
Paula Wagner, who acquired the rights to Robinson’s life story in 2014, will be working on the script with screenwriters Rodriguez and Spellman.