Curtis James Jackson III (born July 6, 1975), better known by his stage name 50 Cent, is an American rapper. He rose to fame with the release of his albums Get Rich or Die Tryin' (2003) and The Massacre (2005). Both albums achieved multi-platinum success, selling over twenty-one million records worldwide.
Born in South Jamaica, Queens, 50 Cent began drug dealing at the age of twelve during the 1980s' crack epidemic. After leaving drug dealing to pursue a rap career, he was shot nine times in 2000. After releasing his album Guess Who's Back? in 2002, 50 Cent was discovered by rapper Eminem and signed to Interscope Records. With the help of Eminem and Dr. Drewho produced his first major commercial successeshe became one of the highest selling rappers in the world. In 2003, he founded the record label G-Unit Records, which signed successful rappers such as Young Buck, Lloyd Banks, and Tony Yayo.
50 Cent has engaged in numerous feuds with other rappers including Ja Rule, The Game, and Fat Joe. He has also pursued an acting career, appearing in the semi-autobiographical film Get Rich or Die Tryin' in 2005 and the Iraq War film Home of the Brave in 2006.
50 Cent, born Curtis James Jackson III, grew up in the South Jamaica neighborhood of Queens in New York City. He grew up without a father and was raised by his mother Sabrina Jackson, who gave birth to him at the age of fifteen. Sabrina, a cocaine dealer, raised Jackson until the age of eight, when she was murdered. Twenty-three at the time, she became unconscious after someone drugged her drink. She was then left for dead after the gas in her apartment was turned on and the windows shut closed. After her death, Jackson moved into his grandparents' house with his eight aunts and uncles. He recalls, "My grandmother told me, 'Your mother's not coming home. She's not gonna come back to pick you up. You're gonna stay with us now.' That's when I started adjusting to the streets a little...
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