By Cynthia Reid | Shadow and Act September 15, 2011 at 9:51AM
"When I see some black Americans I see the end of the world. Lil Wayne is a sign of the end of the world to me. Blacks here started as slaves, move to independence and success but now you’ve crossed the line. Obama killed rap. You don’t have a cause anymore. African Americans have no fight anymore. In the music videos, all you do is party. Everyone says they’re rich, in the club poppin’ bottles."
That's what writer and star Thomas Ngijol of the controversial French comedy Case Depart, a film we've covered extensively here on S&A, said to Chloe Hilliard for Loop21.com when asked what he thought of African Americans during an interview to promote the movie. The flick transports two modern day, half brothers back to the slave era. Fabrice Eboué , who co-stars as Ngijol's brother, co-wrote the script as well.
Grossing more than $15 million already, it's the number one comedy flick in France. Ngijol, who's been a stand-up comedian and actor for the last ten years, makes it clear what the film is about saying it isn't about slavery..."It’s about not very intelligent people with an identity problem. Black men who blame the system."
Of course, it was only a matter of time that Ngijol made a request to clarify his above quote which I'm sure was due to all the backlash he received. He later stated..."First, I respect and love African-Americans. They inspire me in my work and I have nothing but love for people who fight for their rights.. I respect black culture but it's just funny to see the evolution from slave to bling bling. Second, I love hip-hop and Lil Wayne but it's just sad that the industry doesn't have a lot of other alternatives in the spotlight. I came in peace so please spread that to your reader. Thanks."
He also claimed that, as expected, Hollywood came calling and someone "big" will be starring in the American version although he couldn't give any details.
You can read the complete, insightful interview HERE.
I have to add, as an African American, I was in no way offended by his statement. In fact, considering the lack of minority and female representation in this "liberal" entertainment business which the LA Times reported on yesterday, his remark deserves examining. Have we become too complacent? Below is the trailer.