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V Exclusive! Chris Rock's 'School of Rock' Interview (PG.3)

What about Eddie Murphy?

Ed, I haven’t seen Ed in a while. I probably still watch Delirious two or three times a year. Ed ain’t doing stand-up anymore. So if you’re 25, you’re like, “That’s the guy from Nutty Professor or Dr. Doolittle.” I’m not even saying kids. I mean, 25-year-olds.

Coming to America is my favorite movie of all time.

It’s on my top list. It’s probably the best Eddie Murphy performance in a movie. His acting is very underrated in that movie. The story is just so great. The supporting characters, everything feels right in that movie. It’s real Black, but it’s for everybody. It’s the blueprint. It’s like, this is how you do a Black movie.

What makes it a “Black” movie?

It’s real Black. But Eddie Murphy has this thing where he can cross over without [selling out]. What is Blacker than John Amos with two daughters in Queens? Just the character, an African prince. That shit is really Black, but the way they executed it was brilliant. Nutty Professor is another one. What’s Blacker than that family at the table? But at the same time, you have the family dynamic. They emphasized that there’s all these different characters in the family. That’s how real families are. We got loud people, quiet people and we’re all kinda all in it together. Nutty Professor is the Blackest movie I’ve ever seen in my life. But Eddie Murphy, he’s like an old-time performer. It’s all about satisfying multiple groups of people. Eddie is from a time where we only had nine or 15 channels on TV. And if you came up in that show business, you couldn’t be like some of these niche performers. You really had to make everybody laugh. It’s not enough to be good in the ’hood. If there’s only nine channels, there are no hood channels; so many people are going to be seeing me. All that to say is Eddie Murphy is from that era, and so am I.

We had this conversation before, and you’re really passionate about this topic.

I try to reach as many people as I can with what I do. When you’re making a movie, you can’t just try to fill a void. You ultimately have to tell a story. That still has to be the first thing you wanna do. ’Cause when it’s not, the audience at large feels it. And they want stories. Hey, I’m getting ready to do What to Expect. A white woman wrote the script. I want more Black movies. I wish that [Black] women would get involved in the production and the writing and directing of more of them. That’s what I wish. For Black movies anyway.

So you think there’s a space for the Black female writer right now? Like, the female Tyler Perry?

I think there’s an absolute space for it. I think there’s a need for it. Tyler Perry makes movies for women. I wouldn’t even say the female Tyler Perry. The real Tyler Perry. Not that there is anything wrong with him making the movies. Even he’ll probably tell you, you know a woman should probably be doing this. But he’s doing it, and he’s doing a great job at it.

Would you ever be in a Tyler Perry movie?

Hey, everything I get, I read the script. A lot of times I tell my agent to take the front page off the script. So I’m not prejudiced by who wrote it, especially when I’m reading a bunch of scripts, I don’t want the front page.

Yeah, but when you get to the page and there’s a heavyset grandmother coming down the stairs with a frying pan, then you may have a hint who wrote it. Speaking of which, that was a big thing, where Black comedians were being criticized for dressing up like women. How do you feel about that?

I mean, hey, lots of comedians dress up like women, not just Black. It’s one of the oldest tricks in the book. Men in drag.

But it seems to be more of an issue with Black comics, no?

There was Mrs. Doubtfire. Sandler’s next movie is Jack and Jill. He plays his brother and sister. [The Black community] doesn’t have that many movies, so if there’s only four Black movies in a year and two of them star Black men in dresses, I could see how that would upset some people. But that’s a job for some people. Tyler Perry is great in a dress, but I don’t want to see Denzel or Will Smith in a dress. And I don’t think we’re in any danger of seeing that.

Speaking of Will Smith, his kids were winners at the BET Awards this year. I thought that must be hard to have your kids in the spotlight. Do you ever talk to your kids about what they want to do? Has there ever been any aspiration for them to do anything in entertainment?

Not really. My kids are so young. Kids say they want to do all sorts of things. I loved Karate Kid. And my younger daughter, my God, is obsessed with Willow’s “Whip My Hair.” But it’s nothing I wanna do with my kids right now. I want them to have as normal a childhood as they can have. If they want to get into something after they finish college, fine, but right now, that’s just not me. I’m a big fan of Will and the kids, though. It works. They’re like the Baldwins.

Do you still hang out with the old SNL cast?

All the time. It’s no different than anybody else. You know we all go way back, over 20 years.

Speaking of hanging out, were you one of the lucky people to witness Watch the Throne being recorded? I recently went to a listening session and Jay-Z spoke about all of the different influences in the room during the recording. At one point, I think he named Russell Brand.

I heard Watch the Throne. I was around for the making of a few of [the songs]. You don’t want to hear that Russell Brand had a say on Watch the Throne, though. I don’t know. Hip-hop is like boxing. Its glory days have passed, but every now and then there’s a big fight. Boxing is essentially dead, but we’ll all show up to a big fight. Hip-hop is kinda like that.

What other hip-hop artists are you listening to?

Rick Ross. Lil Wayne. Rick Ross’ verse on the Kanye (My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy) album might be the best thing I’ve heard in a long time. I’m a big, big Rick Ross fan. Big Meech! I’m MC Hammer! But hip-hop is not where it was 10, 15 years ago. In a weird way, the basketball wives, those are the new stars. It seems like that kinda culture nowadays.

So reality shows are the new hip-hop?

I’ve heard more people talk about Jim Jones on [Love & Hip Hop] than I heard people talk about his records. These shows seem to have an impact on the culture. NeNe Leakes is as big as any female rapper. I remember I was at a hair show, me and Nia [Long] promoting Good Hair, and Keyshia Cole’s mother was there. And it was like me and Nia weren’t even there.

So what’s next for Chris Rock?

Just trying to keep my spot. Trying to keep up with Jay. Jay came out in ’96 with Reasonable Doubt. That same year, I did Bring the Pain. And I’m still here. There’s a lot of people that have fallen off. I don’t try to think about it. I just ask myself, have I been funny? Am I funny in this play? Can I be funny doing it? I don’t take any of these shots for granted. I get so much feedback from the Kanye skit “The Blame Game.” Same amount of feedback as the last movie I did. You never know what people are gonna respond to.

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G Herbo’s Ex Ari Details Alleged Abuse: “I Have A Black Eye”

G Herbo was arrested on Wednesday (April 17) for battery against his ex-girlfriend and the mother of his child. Now, Ariana Fletcher is speaking up about the alleged incident that led to his arrest.

Fletcher shared her story on Instagram on Thursday (April 18). “He kicked my door down to get in my house because I wouldn’t let him in, beat the f**k out of me front of my son,” she alleged. “Then he took my son outside to his friends and had them drive off with my son, hid all my knives in my house, broke my phone and locked me inside and beat the f**k out of me again (choked me, punched me in my face and all over my body, dragged me outside on the concrete by my hair after his friends drove off with my son, took me in the house and continued beating me).”

She also stated that she has physical signs of the abuse. “He wrecked my whole house, broke all type of sh*t,” she continued. “I have a black eye, my body scraped up from being dragged outside, bruises and cuts all over my body… Please do’t speak on no old “relationship play fights’ cause this ain’t that’.”

It is unclear what triggered the alleged incident. Herbo is still in jail. His bond has been set at $2,000. Read Ari’s full statement below.

 

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#Ari speaks on her altercation with #GHerbo 👀

A post shared by The Shade Room (@theshaderoom) on Apr 18, 2019 at 11:15am PDT

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B-Real, DJ Muggs, Sen Dog, Eric Bobo of Cypress Hill attend a ceremony honoring Cypress Hill With Star On The Hollywood Walk Of Fame on April 18, 2019 in Hollywood, California.
Tommaso Boddi

'It's About Time': Cypress Hill Receives Star On Hollywood Walk Of Fame

Cypress Hill doesn't always get the credit they deserve for their impact on hip-hop history, but they were honored forever this week with a revered star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

With a career of 30 years, the legacy of the four-man group of B-Real, DJ Muggs, Sen Dog, and Eric Bobo (along with former member Mellow Man Ace) includes six platinum albums and 90s zeitgeist songs like "How I Could Just Kill A Man," "Insane In The Brain," and "Hand On The Pump." They released their self-titled debut in 1991 and the chart-topping follow-up Black Sunday two years later,  and have continued creating ever since, releasing their ninth and latest album Elephants On Acid in September 2018. Cypress Hill are considered West Coast rap legends, and the first Latino rap group to have multiple gold and platinum records. Anchored by Muggs' gloomy, gritty production and B-Real's nasal, charismatic rhymes, Cypress Hill is as much a part of rap history as anyone.

The group's ceremony included speeches from Latino comedian George Lopez and fellow West Coast rap legend Xzibit, who said 'it's about time' before detailing the group's illustrious career.

Xzibit pointed out Cypress Hill not only brought Latino representation in an industry that largely lacked it, but that they were staunch marijuana advocates way before today's growing legalization.

"The Grammy-nominated group showed us stoned is indeed the way of the walk. Long before the days of legal dispensaries and medical marijuana, Cypress Hill were advocates of that sticky icky icky oooh wee!" Xzibit shared. "...Cypress Hill are pioneers in their own right. Their accomplishments and accolades reach deep in the roots and history books of hip-hop, and today is another chapter in that saga. Yo B-Real, Sen Dog, Muggs, Bobo: you are our Rolling Stones, Ungrateful Dead, you are the West Coast Public Enemy."

Lopez insisted that out of all the 2,600 stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, "there are none more important than the one we're about to unveil for Cypress Hill. There's a lot of actors, there's a lot of comedians, there's a lot of entertainers who are on this (Walk of Fame). But there's only one cypress hill, the first latino hip-hop group. But to everyone who lives the American dream, not the last latino hip-hop group to ever be on the Hollywood Walk of Fame."

Cypress Hill's star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame is unveiled pic.twitter.com/cNtpIUd8Xg

— Variety (@Variety) April 18, 2019

Xzibit says "it's about time" that Cypress Hill gets their star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame pic.twitter.com/DHap9UkzXq

— Variety (@Variety) April 18, 2019

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Michelle Obama On Beyonce's 'Homecoming' Film: "Girl, You Have Done It Again"

Beyoncé's Coachella documentary, Homecoming: A Film by Beyoncé on Netflix has been met with praise from every corner of the earth since its April 17 release. The compliments are still rolling in and the most recent one that Queen Bey has received is from none other than former First Lady Michelle Obama.

"Girl, you have done it again," Obama said in a short clip. "Constantly raising the bar for us all, and doing it flawlessly. I'd say I'm surprised, but I know who you are. I've seen it up close and personal. Girl, you make me so proud and I love you."

 

From one queen to another, an open letter of congratulations from @MichelleObama to @Beyonce #BeyonceHomecoming pic.twitter.com/jy75vQ95le

— Strong Black Lead (@strongblacklead) April 18, 2019

Obama and Beyoncé's friendship is one that the two have discussed publicly before and one that is admired by their respective supporters. Just a day after the release of Homecoming, Mrs. Carter penned a letter dedicated to Obama for her TIME 100 profile and the superstar only had kind words to say.

"I'm honored to know such a brilliant black woman who's spoken about the sacrifice it takes to balance her passions while remaining a supportive partner and mother, and now a best-selling author with Becoming," Beyonce wrote. "She has continued to open herself up, even if it meant being criticized. She has continued to be a portrait of grace."

Make sure to watch Queen Bey's documentary on Netflix, where she made history by being the first black female headliner of Coachella.

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