Even after his passing there is controversy surrounding Ol’ Dirty Bastard‘s name. A new documentary titled Dirty: Platinum Edition was to be screened last Friday (November 15) but was stopped by a cease and desist letter from ODB’s widow Icelene Jones.
The last minute announcement a mess of the event at the esteemed Brooklyn Academy of Music as the post question and answer session schedule immediately after the screening was moved to the beginning of the evening. Members of the Wu-Tang Clan were scheduled to take part in the Q&A but U-God and Masta Killa, who were present, never went on stage. Additionally several attempts were made to Skype The RZA but technical difficulties prevented The Abbott from joining the festivities via broadcast.
Chris Kanik, of the NuHo Film Festival, then announced that the film could not be shown due to a cease and desist letter submitted by the lawyer who represents the Ol’ Dirty Bastard estate. This in turn frustrated friends, family and fans who were all in attendance.
After Poppa Wu screamed at Kanik to move forward anyway, the film finally began almost two hours after the fact. But in a moment that was both laughable and zen like, RZA popped up on the screen via Skype stopping the documentary that was already two minutes in.
Not able to see the crowd on his end of the video feed, RZA greeted everyone by saying “I know you just all watched all the film.” He then went into updating everyone on the new Wu-Tang Clan album A Better Tomorrow stating, “I’m feeling really inspired by what we’re doing. Now we’re showing another side of life, [it’s] different from just being a street thug, so with the songs we have to give inspiration to adults.”
When Kanik finally explained to him the film will not be shown because “the estate doesn’t want the film to be played,” the majority of those in attendance left and people who stayed became increasingly angry, causing the event organizers to call the police. RZA then went into a diatribe on how the copyright law is endangering the arts. You can view video of RZA’s Skype conversation in its entirety below.
This is not the first time the estate has shut down the Ol’ Dirty Bastard likeness from being shown. Earlier this year Mrs. Jones filed a similar cease and desist letter to stop the ODB hologram from performing alongside the Wu-Tang Clan at the Rock The Bells tour.
Ironically this all occurred on what would have been Dirt Dog’s 45th birthday. At this time there is no word on whether Dirty: Platinum Edition will ever see the light of the day.
What do you make of all of this? Let us know in the comments section below.
Photos: Elektra Records