The highly-controversial A Tribe Called Quest documentary, Beats Rhymes And Life: The Travels of A Tribe Called Quest, will finally hit theaters July 8.
The film has been the subject of much debate, as director Michael Rapaport has been involved in an ugly back-and-forth with the group, which culminated in Q-Tip stating on Twitter that he doesn’t support the film. Recently, ATCQ conducted an interview with MTV in which they accused Rapaport of not honoring edit requests, not paying for travel accommodations for the Sundance Film Festival, among other claims.
In response, Rapaport appeared in a recent interview on complex.com, in which he addressed a number of these issues, including Tribe’s apparent request to get producer credit. “Yeah, well, producers usually produce something. Q-Tip in my opinion has gone out of his way to make this as difficult a process as possible. They never asked about being producers until the 29th hour when my final cut was handed in. Then they said, and this is the exact truth, ‘We wonâ€™t sign off on the final cut until we are given producer credits and our managers are given producer credits.’
“Now, my real opinion on why they shouldnâ€™t be given producer credits is number one, they didnâ€™t produce shit for the movie. Number two, why would you want to take a producer credit on something you didnâ€™t produce? Number three, yes, it could potentially seem like a reality show or propaganda if you get a producer credit on something that is about you. I said, â€œIf I keep this scene in there or that scene in there itâ€™s a better story. Itâ€™s a better articulated, well-rounded story.â€ They said, ‘Youâ€™re gonna have to bite the bullet on this one. We donâ€™t want that scene in there.'”
With regard to the Sundance claim, Rapaport retorted, “Thatâ€™s bullshit. We had tickets booked, flights booked and they didnâ€™t go to Sundance because they didnâ€™t want to go Sundance. Q-Tip didnâ€™t want to go to Sundance because he didnâ€™t wanna go to Sundance, period. Phife went to Sundance. Ali didnâ€™t go to Sundance because he had a tour in Europe and that was months before so we knew he wasnâ€™t coming to Sundance.
Look, itâ€™s like you wanna be producers? Be producers. All the other producers flew themselves to Sundance. Your manager who wants a producer credit, sheâ€™s a producer too, now. I flew myself to Sundance. I put myself up and so did my editor and six or seven of the other producers who actually worked for two and a half years putting this movie together.”
Added Rapaport: “The wackest, most peculiar thing about that bullshit MTV interview they did was when they said, ‘We love the movie. We think itâ€™s an amazing movie. We want people to go see it.’ Well, if you want people to go see it what the fuck are you doing on MTV trying to disrespect me and the movie? Youâ€™re embarrassing and shitting on yourself by even going up there and doing that.”