Just 24 hours ago, fans of Yasiin Bey’s film work were excited to learn he’d be returning to the screen in the fascinating role of jazz legend Thelonius Monk. However, it took less than a day for those hopes to be dashed, as Bey revealed he’d been advised to join the project under false pretexts on social media. In a rare video posted to Instagram, Bey says that he was originally informed that the project had the Monk estate’s approval, however, after the project was announced, the estate made a statement condemning it.
As he says in the video, “Let me be clear. If the Monk estate is not happy with it, if Mr. Monk III is not happy with it, then neither am I.” He goes on to explain, “I was given every indication by the production company that the family was on board, one of my primary questions. Just as important as the music, if not more important, is that the family supported the project. I took them at their word and clearly that wasn’t the case.”
The rapper/actor also expresses his disappointment at the project not receiving the go-ahead, as he was eager to begin acting again. “I’m tight,” he says. “I haven’t done a film in a while. I haven’t had a great yearning to do one but this one, I was really excited about. Perhaps another time under better auspices. C’est la vie.”
Watch Yasiin Bey’s explanation video above.