They say life begins at 40, but as Eminem hits the big four-oh today it seems hip hop’s most controversial bad boy has become the rap game’s elder statesman. Since 'The Slim Shady LP' made him a global star in 1999 he’s sold more than 100 million albums worldwide and been hailed as one of the greatest lyricists ever. He may have been relatively quiet in recent times, aside from his recent duet with Pink, but he’s reportedly working on an eighth studio album and his place in rap history is already assured. As Kanye West once said: “Nobody’s gonna be bigger than Eminem.”





Circa 2000 (Sal Idriss/Redferns)







Eminem onstage in Auburn Hills, Michican, October 2000. He was riding high on the wave of acclaim that followed his thid album, 'The Marshall Mathers LP'. NME gave it 9/10, calling it "the product of a talent supremely untouchable." (AP/Paul Warner)




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Onstage at Coachella, April 2012. Eminem, who'd recently conquered an addiction to prescription drugs, thanked his fans for helping him get through dark times (AP/Chris Pizzello)




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Eminem and Brittany Murphy star as aspiring rapper Jimmy and his girl Alex in 8 Mile, 2002




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Eminem headlines T In the Park 2010 - photographed by Danny North











Netherlands, January 1999 (Michel Linssen/Redferns)

















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