Azie (pronounced "AZ") Faison Jr. was born in the Bronx, New York on November 10, 1964. A fire destroyed his tenement in 1970, forcing the family to relocate to the famed Sugar Hill section of Harlem, New York.
While childhood friend Rich Porter began dealing drugs as early as 12 years old, Faison - a ninth-grade dropout - worked in a neighborhood dry cleaners. Faison maintains that the movie Scarface strongly influenced his decision to become a drug dealer. In that same year, a Dominican cocaine supplier approached Azie about selling the drug. By the time he turned 19, Faison became a cocaine wholesaler of sorts in his Harlem district, and regularly earned from $40,000 - $100,000 a week from his operations.
In 1987, an attempt to rob Faisons stash house (place where he kept drugs or money) left 3 people dead and 3 seriously injured. He himself was shot nine times in the robbery attempt, but survived and left the drug game to embark on a mission to disavow his former life and steer youth away from the path he once chose. In 1989, he formed a rap group called MobStyle and released a solo album in 1991. Following the murders of his friend Rich Porter and his little brother Donnell Porter in 1990, Faison began working on a movie about his life which eventually became Paid in Full, which debuted in 2002.
Around the same time, Faison teamed up with street documentarian Troy Reed to produce the much-acclaimed documentary about his life called Game Over. Faison also worked with Agyei Tyehimba to create Game Over: The Rise and Transformation of a Harlem Hustler, published by Simon & Schuster's Atria Book imprint. At the 2007 Harlem Book Fair, co-author Tyehimba discussed the book on a panel with Congressman Charles Rangel broadcasted live by CSPAN’s Book TV Channel.
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