In addition to performing concerts and speaking to youth before reporting to the slammer next year, T.I. now has a crew of cameras watching him do it all. The rapper is using the last of his year on house arrest to film a documentary series for MTV.
According to Variety, the network will go with the self-proclaimed “King of the South” as he performs the remainder of his community service hours and prepares for a one-year prison sentence next spring. The network plans to air the show some time soon after T.I. goes to jail in early 2009.
The series, by Ish Entertainment, has already gotten an eight-episode order from MTV.
“We began the conversations in the middle of deliberations over what would happen to him,” said Ish’s Michael Hirschorn, whose executive producing with partner Stella Stolper. “The original idea for the show had him staging a series of interventions in each episode with people in danger. But when we visited him under house arrest, it felt much bigger and more powerful than we anticipated.”
Tip (born Clifford Joseph Harris, Jr.) has a history of being on the wrong side of the law, convicted for selling crack cocaine in the late 1990s. In March, the rapper pled guilty to federal weapons charges; the offense that got him the year’s stint.
“Hopefully the mistakes I’ve made will be a lesson to today’s youth and they won’t go down that same path,” T.I. said.
Tip didn’t need the court’s permission to do the show, but MTV will stick to the rules of the artist’s home confinement. The show will also cover the release of Tip’s upcoming album, Paper Trail, heavily inspired by his latest legal woes and the birth of his newborn son.