Hollywood newcomer JAMAL WOOLARD found an unlikely guardian angel as he fought for the lead role in the upcoming NOTORIOUS B.I.G. biopic NOTORIOUS - WILLIE NELSON.
The rapper/actor was trying to find an edge over the other hopefuls auditioning for the part, when he read that Biggie, real name Christopher Wallace, was a closet fan of the country music legend.
And Woolard insists that it was his studies of Nelson's music that helped him land his big film break.
He tells Giant magazine, "At the casting, I seen a million people that looked like Biggie, but I ain't see not one person with a Willie Nelson CD but me (sic).
"His mother listened to Willie, and that's how he would think of hooks. I'm not really stuck on Willie Nelson, but I felt like I needed to listen to him for at least an hour a day."
But Woolard feels he was destined to play Notorious B.I.G. because so many aspects of their lives are similar: "I had my daughter while I was shooting (and) B.I.G. had his daughter when he got his first deal. I went through everything that man went through."
The BBC drama starring Aidan Turner returns to BBC One on September 4th.