Last Friday, the planned final installment of the Friday movie series, continues to stall in development hell with ongoing issues between Ice Cube and Warner Bros. The Wall Street Journal reports that WarnerMedia and Cube have “exchanged heated letters” over the past several weeks, and while both sides seem to want to get the movie made, negotiations may have been irreparably stalled with the company and the rapper unable to come to an agreement.
Reportedly, Ice Cube is looking for Warner Bros. to surrender its rights to Friday along with two other movies he made for the studio, All About the Benjamins and The Players Club. Warner Bros. called the demand “extortionate” in its response, declining to surrender the rights to any of their Ice Cube movies. Cube’s lawyer also says the studio has been excessive in its feedback notes for the Last Friday scripts, alleging Warner Bros. has been a “poor steward” for Friday.
“These guys don’t get me, and I don’t get them,” Cube said of the creative differences between the two sides, concerning where the next Friday should go.
Warner Bros. also alleges that Cube’s contentions are “revisionist history,” and an attempt to unjustly obtain its intellectual property. They also shift the blame back to Cube for failing to get Last Friday off the ground, citing an “unwillingness” to engage with the studio. Cube’s endeavors outside of movie making, such as the Big3 basketball league he operates, was also named as a distraction.
Meanwhile, Cube’s rep suggested that there could also be a case of discrimination at the studio. In one letter, it was written that Cube’s projects are “habitually underfunded in comparison with projects featuring white casts and creative teams.” The company denied discriminating against Cube or balking at any of his projects, saying the complaints are “grounded in a libelous set of knowing falsehoods.”
“We strongly disagree with any claims of discriminatory treatment, and stand by our ongoing and proven commitment to support diverse voices and storytellers and will continue to do so as we move forward,” said a Warner Bros. spokesperson.
Another major problem that’s derailed Last Friday is the passing of John Witherspoon, who appeared as Pops in all three movies of the series. After Witherspoon’s death, Cube apologized to the late actor for failing to get Last Friday made while he was still with us. At the time, he also pointed the finger at Warner Bros., saying that he tried his best to make the movie happen but the studio was always in his way.
“I really apologize to my friend for not getting the next Friday movie made. It’s not my fault,” Cube said at Witherspoon’s celebration of life service. “Some dumbass people in Hollywood, at New Line Cinema… Gave you punks two scripts and you all didn’t want to do them. That’s the real. We was trying to make that movie for years and we couldn’t get it done, but we got the other three, and we got our memories, and we got our love.”
At this point, Last Friday isn’t looking very likely at all. For those wanting to see a fourth installment, keep those fingers crossed that Warner Bros. and Cube will figure out how to get on the same page. This news comes to us from The Wall Street Journal.
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