dolemite true story
Source: Netflix

Who Exactly Is Rudy Ray Moore, the Visionary Performer 'Dolemite Is My Name' Is Based On?


Oct. 25 2019, Updated 6:43 p.m. ET

The 2019 Netflix comedy, Dolemite Is My Name chronicles the story of uniquely talented comedian, rapper and R&B singer, Rudy Ray Moore (Eddie Murphy), who becomes a national phenomenon with his profanity-laden songs and unusual performing style. 

Rudy skyrockets to success by offering a fresh perspective on the harsh realities of sex work. Dolemite – true story or not – is a vital movie that's just as entertaining as it is relevant.

Is it based on an actual person though? Let's find out. 

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Is Dolemite Is My Name a true story? It's based on the life of Rudy Ray Moore. 

"Dolemite is my name and f–-king up motherf–-kers is my game," shouts Rudy at his mirror reflection in a crucial scene of the 2019 Netflix movie. The flamboyant, larger-than-real life character is based on the true story of the comedian, singer, and multi-talent with the same name. 

dolemite true story
Source: Netflix
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Rudy spent his early adulthood trying to get his break in the world of popular entertainment, and success came rolling in once he discovered the urban legend of Dolemite, a foul-mouthed, shamelessly provocative pimp who eagerly traded stories featuring unfathomably vulgar acts. 

Rudy didn't just perceive the pimp as a potent source of inspiration. Dolemite became his alter ego, the persona he used in comedy sets and as a singer. He was the main influence behind records like the 1970 "Eat Out More Often," and "This P---y Belongs to Me," and "The Dirty Dozen," all of which boast lyrics so risqué they'd have made the real Dolemite blush. "[Rudy] embraced the period's rampant sexual revolution," prompts Refinery 29's Ariana Brockington. 

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The comedian used the formula across his outputs, and it even sparked him to transform centuries-old folklore tales into racy, sexually-overloaded stories laden with swear words, reports New York Times' Aisha Harris. Once success came rolling in, Rudy decided to amp up the enterprise and branch out even further: he took on the mighty task of producing blaxploitation movies. 

dolemite true story
Source: Netflix
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Rudy was a revolutionary blaxploitation movie director. 

A real-life visionary, Rudy produced and starred in his own pieces, including the 1976 The Monkey Hustle, which centres on two boys' clever attempts to make some money on the side — such as the spectacularly misdirected act of stealing a television — and the 1976 The Human Tornado, which revolves around a devastated house party host's relentless battles against a bunch of racist police officers. 

...and the brains behind a particularly memorable scene. 

The latter involves one of the most insane sex scenes in cinema history, vouches USA Today Bryan Alexander. As the journalist points out, this served as an inspiration behind that certain, rather special scene — if you saw the movie already, you'll know — in Dolemite is My Name. 

As to Rudy's finest piece of work? The 1976 Dolemite, an autobiographical work that casts him as the protagonist ready and prepared to turn the world of popular entertainment upside down. Of course. 

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