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Rapper T.I. once set out to make a presence in the world of Hollywood after already making an impact in the music industry. But going to jail once played a role in impeding the star’s acting career.

T.I. missed out on ‘Tower Heist’ because of his prison sentence

T.I. performing during a comedy tour.
T.I. | Prince Williams/Wireimage

Superstar T.I. was in the middle of a rising film career before his stint in prison. He was already making a name for himself in Hollywood, having starred in features like American Gangster and Takers. But his prison sentence in 2010 cost him a couple of roles that might have further benefited his acting prospects.

One of those films was the heist movie Tower Heist, which ended up starring Eddie Murphy and Ben Stiller. In an interview with Daily Beast, the multi-platinum artist shared he was also supposed to be a part of the comedic roster.

“Actually, man, I was supposed to be in Tower Heist. I was ‘indisposed.’ Me and Brian Grazer, who produced American Gangster, were speaking about it when it was just a script and Brett [Ratner] hadn’t even came on to direct it yet, so it was years ago,” T.I. said.

By the time the project was on the way to becoming an actual film, T.I was serving his time.

“After that, it went away, then came back with Brett attached to it and Ben Stiller, and I was reconsidered, and Brett and I had some very, very positive discussions about it and I was right there. And then life happened. But I still believe it’s going to be a good movie,” he said.

Other roles rapper T.I. missed out on

Tower Heist wasn’t the only movie that prison time cost the rapper. There were other blockbusters that T.I. was being discussed for, and many major actors he missed out on working with.

“G.I. Joe II [G.I. Joe: Retaliation], they called me for that. World War Z with Brad Pitt. They called me for that. The Joel Silver movie [Bullet to the Head] – I would have been co-starring with Sylvester Stallone. They called me for that too,” T.I. once told Sister 2 Sister (via Contact Music).

However, T.I. still managed to bounce back with his acting career. After being released from prison, the rapper beefed up his film resume by starring in films like Get Hard and Ant-Man. The last feature film the rapper starred in was 2020’s Monster Hunter.

Why T.I. was once sentenced to 11 months in prison


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In September 2010, T.I. was once reportedly stopped in Los Angeles by police for a traffic violation. The officers involved in the case found drugs in the rapper’s car, leading to his arrest and subsequent imprisonment. Prosecutors were looking to sentence T.I. to two years for the crime. But T.I. managed to get a more lenient sentence of 11 months.

The hip-hop mogul vowed to change his ways after the arrest, citing drug addiction as a major reason for his behavior.

“As I discovered in talking to my probation officer, I had many problems from my childhood. Now I am down to the disease of addiction. I need help, for me, my mother, my kids. I need the court to give me mercy. Judge, don’t send me back to prison,” T.I. once told the judge during his sentencing according to CNN.