'I'm Not About to Pay': Ice Cube Slams Warner Bros. for Withholding Rights to 'Friday' Trilogy

The rapper and actor appeared on Mike Tyson's Hotboxin' podcast where he sounded off on his loss of distribution rights to the films he wrote and starred in.

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By Emily Rella • Dec 7, 2022

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Actor and rapper Ice Cube is slamming Warner Bros. for not giving him ownership over what he claims is rightfully his — distribution control to the lucrative Friday movie franchise.

Cube appeared on boxing legend Mike Tyson's podcast 'Hotboxin' where he called the studio's behavior "weird" after disclosing that despite writing and starring in the films, the company would not release the rights.

"They don't know what they're doing," he said. "We'd love to have it back. I think it's going be close to a time when we get it back. So, we'll either wait for that time, or we'll keep trying to convince them that they need to let us control the movie. It's my movie, but they have distribution control."

Cube no longer has distributional control over the trilogy after Warner Bros. purchased New Line Cinema (the original production company) in 2008.

The actor has his sights on a fourth movie but cannot do so without the go-ahead from Warner Bros. or by potentially purchasing back the rights to the film which he very colorfully expressed that he would not have any interest in.

"I ain't putting sh*t up for it. F**k no," he told Tyson. "They need to give it to me, and they're going to make money. I'm not about to pay for my own stuff, that's stupid. That ain't in my wheelhouse, I'm not doing that."

On the podcast, Ice Cube said he wrote two new scripts for a fourth installation of the movie series only to have both rejected by Warner Bros., even though the series makes the company "a lot of money," and struggled to conceptualize why the studio wouldn't approve the new scripts.

"I've written two scripts — one of them they said the timing wasn't right when it was totally right," he explained. "The next one they just kind of put it in 'development hell.'"

Cube went on to explain that his other hit movie, All About the Benjamins, would probably not see a sequel because it is owned by, in his words, "the same dumb*ss company."

It's estimated that all three of the Friday movies — Friday, Next Friday, and Friday After Next — have grossed a combined $118,049,776 in their lifetime, the highest grossing of the trilogy being Next Friday which has brought in an estimated $57,328,603 since its January 2000 release.

Ice Cube's estimated net worth is $160 million.

Emily Rella

Entrepreneur Staff

News Writer

Emily Rella is a news writer at Entrepreneur.com. Previously, she was an editor at Verizon Media. Her coverage spans features, business, lifestyle, tech, entertainment, and lifestyle. She is a 2015 graduate of Boston College and a Ridgefield, CT native. Find her on Twitter at @EmilyKRella.

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