Eminem's Empire

Em Inc. is expanding beyond CDs, live shows and movies with a record label, DVDs, video games, clothing - but still no "8 Mile" beer.

BY WARREN COHEN

July 24, 2003

Eminem is taking his song “Lose Yourself” literally. The rapper is keeping down low in 2003, with only a handful of projects and business ventures. They include:

MOVIES: Em, along with manager Paul Rosenberg, Dr. Dre and Interscope Records chairman Jimmy Iovine, is starting a production company to create films, TV shows, DVDs and games. The only item in production is a 50 Cent video game, due out next year. Last month, Em pulled the plug on a music-video brainteaser game that would have been available for PlayStation and PCs. Eminem receives film offers on a weekly basis, but he hasn’t committed to any projects. He prefers to develop his own movies rather than play in someone else’s. 8 Mile grossed $233 million, but Eminem received only $3 million for his star turn; his next paycheck will be substantially larger.

DVDs: The 8 Mile DVD reaped $75 million in sales and rentals the week it came out. Later this year, Eminem will release a concert DVD from last year’s twenty-eight-date Anger Management tour, which will also include songs from Ludacris, Papa Roach, Xzibit and D12.

ALBUMS: Em played producer for one song on Redman’s forthcoming disc. He produced and rapped on Obie Trice’s forthcoming September debut album, Cheers, as well as Dr. Dre’s Detox, coming out later this year. Em’s group D12 will also release a new record this winter. His own encore to The Eminem Show won’t come out until next summer, even though he’s laying down the occasional track now.

CLOTHING: The initial launch of Eminem’s collection, Shady Ltd., includes twenty-five-dollar T-shirts and thirty-dollar hats and will soon expand to jeans and hooded sweat shirts. Because artists typically earn a seven-percent to ten-percent royalty on such licensed gear, some industry analysts predict that Eminem could earn between $2.5 million and $5 million in one year alone.

ENDORSEMENTS: Eminem has been approached for schemes as loony as an 8 Mile beer. An Eminem song appeared briefly on Fox’s Boston Public, and “Lose Yourself” was heard in a recent ad touting Apple’s iTunes music store, but he has made no other commercial endorsements.

CONCERTS: Eminem appeared at June’s Hot 97 Summer Jam in East Rutherford, New Jersey, and then toured for two weeks in Western Europe, including Germany, France and England. His only scheduled U.S. shows this summer, on July 12th and 13th at Detroit’s Ford Field, have sold out all 45,000 seats.

RECORD COMPANY: As president of Shady Records, Eminem watches over ten employees, including three talent scouts and a promotions director. So far, the label’s roster boasts 50 Cent (shared with Interscope and Aftermath), Obie Trice and D12, along with Eminem’s DJ Green Lantern, who will release a compilation disc early next year.