'Driven: Lil' Kim' : A VH-1 Special
It was clear that young Kimberly Denise Jones developed an interest in music and fashion early. She would wear her mother's makeup and sing in front of the mirror. What no one could have predicted was how as an adult she would become one of rap's most successful female artists.
"Driven: Lil' Kim" tells the tale of a young woman's rise from the Brooklyn projects to the center of the Brooklyn rap scene with the help of her mentor, Biggie Smalls. Kim's early years are brought to life with intriguing and rare footage, including video clips and photos that have never been shown on television. Also included are interviews with those special people who played integral roles in her development as an artist and individual, providing a vivid and complex portrait of one of rap's most vibrant stars. The latest episode of the hit VH1 weekly series, "Driven: Lil' Kim" premieres Sunday, February 16 at 9:00 p.m. (ET/PT).
There's no such thing as overnight success -- over time, like a jigsaw puzzle, pieces are added, small breakthroughs are made, and eventually the picture of a pop star begins to take shape. VH1's "Driven" traces that process from childhood to the first glimmer of stardom, through the eyes of those who knew the artist best and helped play pivotal roles in their development, examining the stars' blueprints for success and what propelled them to achieve it despite the obstacles that lay in their paths.
Lil' Kim is hip-hop's Queen Bee, driven to redefine what a female rapper can be: strong, sexy, independent and provocative, stylish enough to party with the elite, but still tough enough to hold it down on the streets. This episode of "Driven" spotlights rare footage including tape of Kim in her early teens at a house party; 18-year old Kim hanging out in a Brooklyn park; footage of Lil' Kim on tour with Biggie Smalls; Junior M.A.F.I.A. performing "Player's Anthem" on "It's Showtime at the Apollo;" and several of Lil' Kim's underground performances after Biggie's death. New interviews with family members, friends, teachers, DJs and record execs shed light on the superstar's tumultuous rise to the top.
Highlights of "Driven: Lil' Kim" include:
* Jermaine Dupri, Producer: "She started becoming like the black Madonna of rap music."
* Voletta Wallace, Biggie's Mother: "She used to come to the house. And I asked my son, 'What is that little girl doing here? Who is she?' 'She's my artist.' And I said, 'Artist? You know, who are you to have an artist?'"
* Ruby Jones Mitchell, Mother: "Kim and I you know eventually started living out the trunk of my car."
* Jacob York, Producer: "I'm like, 'What are you, pregnant?' She's like, 'Yeah.' And I'm like, 'Oh, my God!' We already knew who it was. She told me who it was. It was Biggie."
* Chris Jones, Brother: "When Big passed, it was like ... she knew that she was gonna have to grow up overnight."