Hip-hop mogul debuting in Broadway's ''Raisin'' -- P. Diddy -- The Must List 2004

By EW Staff
Updated June 25, 2004 at 04:00 AM EDT

AGE 34
MUSTWORTHINESS Somewhere between marathon running, menswear designing, and rap moguling, he’s managed to break box office records with his Broadway debut as Walter Lee Younger in ”A Raisin in the Sun.”
ACT 1, SCENE 1 ”The most challenging part has been my overall inexperience on stage, [because] my first 30 days on Broadway were my first 30 days in live theater, period.”
AND THEN CAME THE CRITICS ”The good reviews, the mediocre, the bad — everything has been fair,” says the actor known as Sean Combs. ”Everything has been the way it is for an actor on Broadway.”
THEN TONY PASSED BY ”One of the secrets of my success is my realism,” Diddy explains. ”For me to think I would be nominated for a Tony when the nominations came on my 25th day on Broadway would have been totally unrealistic.”
AND IT’S STILL BETTER THAN TOILETS ”I used to have to clean bathrooms in…an El Torito, a Mexican restaurant. It was a job! But I was the best bathroom cleaner that ever was.”
ON HIS MUST LIST ”Russell Simmons, Jay-Z, Al Sharpton, Muhammad Ali, and all the troops fighting overseas. And my mother. She would kill me if I left her off.”
NEXT A project ”to bring out the biggest youth voter turnout and the biggest minority voter turnout.”