Just as fans began buzzing about a leaked trailer of the highly anticipated A Tribe Called Quest documentary, "Beats, Rhymes & Life," the group's frontman, Q-Tip, has come out in protest against the project.
"I am not in support of the a tribe called quest documentary," Tip tweeted. "The filmmaker should respect the band to the point of honoring the few requests that’s was made abt the piece. The filmmaker shld respect the band enough to honor our request regarding the the film."
A week later, Elliott Wilson, who's filling in for Angela Yee at Shade 45, caught up with the Abstract and got a more detailed account of his gripe.
"It’s not that we don’t agree with the film," Tip explained. "As a film, it’s just not finished, there's some holes in it. You know it’s tough when you’re an up-and-coming director and you’re working on something out of your pocket, you’ve been working on it for a long time, you kinda wanna see it. 'Ok, here it is, let’s go.' And you start speeding a little, not saying that this is the case, but one can connect the dots."
"There are still some things that need to be done," he continued. "It’s just that simple. Everybody knows that there’s been issues between Phife and I. Like I said in the Spin magazine, I never really had problems with Phife, Phife has had issues with me. These things are included in the film and we’re not by any means trying to sweeten it, or take any of that out. What happened, happened. And we’re still brothers. I’ve known the ni**a since we 3, 4 years old. You’re gonna have that type of s**t. But that’s not the issue. The issue is just as a film..."
Tip, who serves as a producer on the film alongside other Tribe members and first-time director Michael Rapaport, feels the film doesn't tell a complete story just yet.
"A Tribe Called Quest in this film is easily analogous to N.W.A, Public Enemy, Run-D.M.C., Jay-Z, Grandmaster Flash," he explained. "This is probably the first extensive cinematic documentary done about a hip-hop group, so there’s so much riding on this. It’s not only Tribe’s story, it’s all of our stories, so we got to make sure that shit is done right. We can’t just brush over it."
"Beats, Rhymes & Life:The Travels of A Tribe Called Quest" is slated to premiere at the Sundance Film Festival in January '11.