What the Hell Happened to Martin Lawrence?

martin lawrence 2013

Martin Lawrence

In the mid-90’s, Martin Lawrence had a hit TV show and a burgeoning movie career. He went on to establish himself as a Hollywood A-lister in big screen action movies and comedies. But by the end of the decade, Lawrence was surrounded by scandal. Since then, his movie career has slowed down considerably. His last box office hit was in 2007.

What the hell happened?

Lawrence began boxing after high school. He was a Golden Gloves contender until he suffered an eye injury that made him reconsider his career. Lawrence moved from Maryland to Colorado where he started performing at the Kings Wood comedy club. Not long after, Lawrence appeared on the televised talent competition, Star Search aka American Idoll for the 80’s.. Here he is facing against the show’s then-champion, Jason Stuart.

You have to feel for the guy. He had no idea he was competing against a future giant of comedy. Lawrence was very successful on Star Search. He went on to the show’s final round, but he did not win. However, his performance caught the eye of executives at Columbia TriStar Television. This lead to Lawrence being cast on the sitcom, What’s Happening Now!!

lawrence - what's happening

Martin Lawrence – What’s Happening Now! – 1987-1988

What’s Happening Now!! was a follow-up to the 1970’s sitcom, What’s Happening!!

The original show was only moderately successful on ABC. But it did very well in reruns which is a bit ironic given that the most popular character on the show was actually named Rerun. This lead to the show being revived in 1985 as What’s Happening Now!!

Lawrence joined the cast in the show’s third and final season from 1987-1988. He played a teenager who worked as a busboy at the restaurant owned by the show’s main characters. Lawrence was actually 22 at the time.

lawrence - do the right thing

Martin Lawrence – Do the Right Thing – 1989

Lawrence made his big screen debut with a small role in Spike Lee’s comedy/drama, Do the Right Thing.

Do the Right Thing told the story of a neighborhood in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn that erupts in racial tensions. Lee wrote, directed and co-starred opposite Danny Aiello, Ossie Davis, Ruby Dee, John Turturro, Samuel L. Jackson and Rosie Pérez who was also making her film debut. Lawrence is basically a background character in the neighborhood as seen in this NSF clip:

The ending to Do the Right Thing sparked controversy. The message of the movie is intentionally mixed. But many feared that the movie would incite violence. In spite of the controversy, reviews were very positive and it was a hit at the box office.

Next: House Party and Boomerang


Posted on November 23, 2013, in Movies, What the Hell Happened?, WTHH Actor and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 112 Comments.

  1. I’m very surprised that you, LeBeau didn’t bring up Martin Lawrence’s hosting stint on “Saturday Night Live”, in which due to his monologue (in which he did this routine about women having bad personal hygiene), Martin basically got banned from (I think at least initially from NBC, not just “SNL”). The whole monologue has been removed from reruns and replaced by this disclaimer talking about how people almost lost their jobs (literally) over what Martin Lawrence said.

    Anyway, I think that based on a lot of the negative reviews that Martin has received during his career, it’s quite obvious that he couldn’t pick a quality script to save his life. I think another problem w/ Martin is that you can argue that he at the end of the day, didn’t really evolve in his comedy and/or performances in general. Martin basically, mugs and gives out a broad physicality in just about anything he does. What really doesn’t help is that Martin’s speciality so to speak, is in low-brow humor (a la, the aforementioned “SNL” monologue).

    I just think that Martin was at the end of the day, undone by his lack of range so to speak (which more or less, arguably made him “box office poison” and made him seem stale comedic-wise), poor script choices, and of course, his erratic behavior. I’ve heard rumors that Martin has bi-polar disorder and depression issues.


    • I didn’t come across the SNL story. But I love a good SNL story as much as anyone. I’ll have to look it up and update the article. Thanks.


      • Here’s the transcript for Martin Lawrence’s now infamous “SNL” monologue:

        Martin Lawrence: Yeah! Thank you, thank you, thank you very much. Thank you, uh-huh. Yeah! Man, man oh man, look at all these white people.

        No, I guess this ain’t the Def Jam, right, so I-I guess I better be cool, huh? I got some black folks out there to back me up though. (Cheers)

        Woo! All right, all right. Man, I-I am so happy to be here, this is a dream come true for me. I mean, hostin’ Saturday Night Live, I watched everybody. All of ’em on here, and I was like “when I’m gonna get my chance? When I’m gonna get my chance?” Well dammit, now is my chance. Ain’t no stoppin me now, I tell you.

        It’s crazy though, I gotta talk about some things that the daggone censors are followin’ me everywhere around, wish they’d get off my ass- oops, damn, did I slip?

        It’s botherin’ me, man. You know, “you can’t say this, you can’t say that,” I’m like, well, how am I gonna talk about the world? You know? I mean I need to talk about something to you all, can I- can I do it? Can I talk to y’all? (Cheers & applause) I mean, I-I hope the kids are in bed, you know, because I got to talk, y’all.

        Um… Something concerns me real deeply. You know, uh, and it’s crazy, uh, and no fella has come up to me, none of the brothers, anybody, has acted like it concerns them as much as it has me.

        Um… The ladies, in the 90s, have license to cut off the pilly-packers. (Laughs)Yep. They got license to cut your thing off, man. And this scares me, OK? Because I know women are mad in the 90s, especially white women, I mean, this is the year where they smash your knees and cutting the pilly-packers off.

        You know what I’m saying? But I mean, I feel for that man though, man. I feel for him. cause she took his thang man, you know what I’m saying? He can’t do this (mimes intercourse). He ain’t ever gonna really be able to do this. You know, if you can’t do this in your life somethin’s missin’. You know what I’m saying? And the lady cut it off, man, and cut it off while he was asleep and he ain’t even know it was gone. He was asleep, just chillin’, you know, rubbing, having one of them dreams, (mimes sleeping man feeling for penis) and woke up and wasn’t nothin’ there.

        Now what got me about the whole thing was, if she’s gonna cut it off at least she coulda left it around his bed or somethin’, you know what I’m sayin’, the man woke up with no options, couldn’t find the peely- pilly packer nowhere, you know what I’m sayin?

        What she did with it, got in the car, then she got in the car with- held it in one hand drove the car with the other. Drove down the damn street and threw it in the neighbor’s yard. “Here, he’d like to visit your ass.”

        It scares me, y’all. It’s sad, man, a-and how I found out, I found a brother, I heard a brother found it. You know, and it was scary cause they say he was just walkin’ down the street, mindin’ his own business, he’s chillin’, he… (mimes walking and stopping in surprise)… cause he saw this he said “Wait a minute, is that a pilly-packer? Damn.” And it was white and little, so he had to squint. (Laughs & applause)

        He ain’t really know, you know, he said “Damn, well I don’t really know that person,” he wanted to pick it up but he said “I don’t know the person.” So uh, what he did was run and get a stick and scooped it up, you know and said “All right, cool, what can I do with it, can- what can I do with it,” you know, “what can I do with it?” You know?

        And he thought, and he said “what would a white man do, what would a white man do?” You know, and the first thing came to the brother’s head was get it on ice, you know. So he saw an ice cream truck, you know, threw the pilly-packer on some sno-cones, you know. It scares me so bad I don’t go to bed without a Nutty Buddy by my side, y’all.

        Something else concerns me and it hurts, see I’m, I’m single, I’m a single man, I don’t have nobody, I’m looking for somebody and- but I’m meeting a lot of women out there, and you got some beautiful women, but you got some out there that, uh, I gotta say somethin’. Um… some of you are not washing your ass properly.* (laughter & applause) OK? Don’t- don’t get me wrong, not all, some of you, you know what I’m sayin’, uh… I’m sorry, ‘Cause uh, listen, now, I don’t know what it is a woman got to do to keep up the hygiene on the body I know, uh, I’m watching douche commercials on television, and I’m wonderin’ if some of you are reading the instructions. I don’t think so. Y’know, ’cause I’m getting with some of the ladies, smelling odors, going “Wait a minute. (gestures with index finger) Girl, smell this! This you! Smell yourself, girl.”

        Smell yourself! I tell a woman in a minute, douche! douche! Some women don’t like when you tell them that, when you straightforward with them. “Douche!” They, (imitating woman) “Forget you! You cannot douche all the time, you’re gonna wash all the natural juices out the body.” I say, well, I dont give a damn what you do, put a Tic-Tac in your ass. Put a Cert in your ass. Oh, oh, y’know, this look like a good damn place for a Stick-up up in your ass.

        I’m sorry, y’all. You got to wash properly. You know, and then, you know, ’cause I’m a man, I like to kiss on women, you know, I like to kiss all over their bodies, you know. But if you’re not clean in your proper areas I can’t… you know… kiss all over the places I wanna kiss. You know, some women’ll let you go down, you know what I’m sayin’, knowin’ they got a yeast infection. (Some audience disgust) I’m sorry. Sorry. Come up with dough all on your damn lip… Got a bagel and a croissant on your lip. “Anybody got any butter?” I like jelly on mine.

        Well look here, y’all, we got a great show for you tonight, cause I’m here. (Cheers and applause) That’s right. I’m here, Crash- yo, yo! Crash Test Dummies are here so yo, we’ll be back, hang on, we gonna be back, we gonna do our thing!

        (removes shirt and conducts martial arts moves)

        * In all repeat airings of this episode, the show cuts away here to a series of text screens with voiceover reading the following:

        V/O: [ SUPER: ] “At this point in his monologue, Martin begins a commentary on what he considers the decline in standards of feminine hygiene in this country. Although we at Saturday Night Live take no stand on this issue one way or the other, network policy prevents us from re-broadcasting this portion of his remarks.

        In summary, Martin feels, or felt at the time, that the failure of many young women to bathe thoroughly is a serious problem that demands our attention. He explores this problem, citing numerous examples from his personal experience, and ends by proposing several imaginative solutions.

        It was a frank and lively presentation, and nearly cost us all our jobs. We now return to the conclusion of Martin’s monologue.”

        The episode then cuts back to the live monologue, beginning with “Well look here, y’all.”


        • Did Chris Rock’s ‘SNL’ Monologue Go Too Far?

          I’m not saying folks weren’t offended or can’t be offended by the jokes in Rock’s monologue. If you lived through the events of those days, you probably aren’t in the mood to joke about it. But what about the families of Ebola victims? What about the families of dead soldiers? None of that stopped people from making jokes about the virus or the dual wars we were fighting for over ten years.

          And in terms of controversial SNL monologues, this is nowhere near the level of Martin Lawrence’s famous appearance on the show. In both examples, we get a performer that is known for a certain type of humor. Lawrence just managed to rub everyone the wrong way, leading to this being rebroadcast with any re-run of the episode:

          Will that happen with Chris Rock’s monologue? No way.

          I don’t even have an issue with Martin Lawrence’s appearance personally, but the disclaimer is what happens when outrage grows to a point of distraction. It’s happened before and can easily happen again, especially with the Internet opening communication for folks. But what was probably too much for a network censor shouldn’t be too much for a comedian.

          With Rock’s monologue, I think it should be viewed as something he couldn’t have gotten away with ten years ago. If anything is surprising about it, it’s the fact that he did it and garnered a fairly tepid response. It might be because the rest of the episode softened the impact or maybe people are opening up a bit. What do you think? Leave some thoughts in the comments.


        • I don’t watch SNL very often anymore. But since we were recording an SNL related podcast the next day, I watched Rock’s monologue. Was it controversial? Sure. That’s typical of Rock’s comedic style. But it was funny. He was telling the truth. That’s what great comedians do.


        • In a sense, I think in hindsight, the “SNL” incident was the first real sign of trouble if you will for Martin Lawrence. I guess because it made Martin out to be totally unreliable (or too much of a loose canon) and his psychological issues later on further cemented that. And plus, at least on the surface, it’s hard to understand what type of true point that he was trying to make. It’s like Martin was just trying to be as vulgar, crude, and dare I say, misogynistic as he could possibly be within the confides of NBC’s standards, but w/o any hint of irony (maybe if the monologue was about Martin trying his best to be “clean” for NBC despite his reputation on the contrary) or any true commentary. I mean, even if you aim to be like that comedically, you still have to at the end of day, have some substance (either way, Martin seemed to have to be so relentless with the vulgarity and not now when to pull the breaks) in what you’re saying.


      • Martin Lawrence’s comedy, particularly his stand-up act, tends to be very blue and raunchy. I read Leonard Maltin say about “You So Crazy” (Maltin gave the movie a 1 * or 1/2 * I believe in his annual film guide due to how embarrassingly crude and off-color the whole thing was) that it lacked the wit and observational insights of Richard Pryor’s classic stand-up films. This is kind of funny since Martin has said that Richard Pryor was his biggest influence as a comedian (I guess right down to the trainwreck of a personal life). Pryor even once showed up on Martin’s sitcom:

        I think what got him in trouble on “SNL” however, had more to do w/ the believe that he didn’t run by what he was going to say past the writers. I mean, if you ask Martin Lawrence to appear on your show, you pretty much get what you paid for. It’s pretty well known that Lorne Michaels, the executive producer of “SNL” doesn’t like it when his performance engage in ab-libbing/improv behind his back.

        With that being said, I think Martin’s style of comedy is another reason why his career faltered. Many of Martin’s latter movies were PG-13 and thus, he was forced to neuter himself so to speak. Granted, he had to “neuter” himself too on his sitcom but he at least had a significant amount of control over the final product.


        • The 25 Best “Martin” Episodes of All Time:

          To this day, the FOX Thursday night lineup of Martin, Living Single, and New York Undercover is known as the Holy Trinity in the hood—a block of television that targeted people of color and won. Martin stands out from that bunch as one of the greatest programs to ever grace television. It was—and still is—pure hip-hop.

          Martin (Martin Lawrence), on-air personality for the fictional Detroit radio station WZUP, and his boys—Tommy (Thomas Mikal Ford) and Cole (Carl Anthony Payne II)—wore Jordans and spoke slang. Martin’s wife Gina (Tisha Campbell-Martin) and her best friend Pam (Tichina Arnold)—who Martin hated with all his heart—were strong women who didn’t take shit from anybody. In addition to the leading parts, there were bit players like ghetto starlet Sheneneh, playa from the Himalayas Jerome (both played by Lawrence), salesman Hustle Man (Tracy Morgan), and Martin’s elderly foe Miss Geri (the late Jeri Gray), among others.

          Martin was the black version of The Honeymooners. Martin and Gina loved each other madly, just like Ralph and Alice; Pam was Trixie; and Tommy and Cole were both Ed Norton (with an emphasis on Cole). The relationship between Martin and Gina was so important that the show died when Tisha Campbell-Martin filed a lawsuit citing sexual harassment and verbal abuse against Lawrence and HBO, the show’s production company. Campbell-Martin refused to be in the same frame with Lawrence, and eventually the dispute had to be settled out of court.

          On camera, and for four of the show’s five seasons, Martin and Tisha portrayed the trials and tribulations of a young couple just trying to survive in Detroit. They were a ride-or-die couple no matter what obstacles they faced. And their friends—Tommy, Cole, and Pam—were loyal co-defendants in whatever nonsense the couple got into.

          This was a very difficult piece to curate, and we know people will have their own favorites (that’s what the comment section is for). Here is our ranking of the 25 best Martin episodes of all time.


      • 5 Celebrities Who Are Banned From Hosting “SNL”:

        Martin Lawrence

        Twenty years ago, while hosting SNL for the first time, actor and comedian Martin Lawrence decided to go off script during his monologue. Take a wild guess as to how that turned out for him (hint: see article title). It actually started out fine, as Lawrence delighted 1994 audiences with some real topical Lorena Bobbitt material. The trouble began when he decided to move the topic of conversation to women’s lady parts. Specifically, how bad they smell. It was at this point that the producers in the control room made this face. Needless to say, the bit included some rough language, to the point where producers had to black out the section for reruns and instead run this hilarious message. (Start at 4:45.)


        • SNL: Lorne Michaels’s Blacklist A Look Back at Martin Lawrence & 4 Other Celebs Who’ve Been Banned:

          Lorne Michaels’s Blacklist: A Look Back at Martin Lawrence and 4 Other Celebs Who’ve Been Banned From ‘SNL’

          By Joal Ryan 15 hours ago Yahoo TV

          It was 20 years ago Wednesday that Martin Lawrence hosted “Saturday Night Live” for his first — and last — time.

          The comic’s opening monologue, a critique on feminine hygiene that included recommendations for the “unusual use of Tic Tacs, Certs, and Stick-Ups room deodorizer,” as the New York Daily News put it back in the day, prompted hundreds of complaint calls, howls from NBC affiliates, and an on-the-fly editing job by “SNL.” (Only East Coast viewers watching the Feb. 19, 1994, show live saw Martin’s routine in its entirety; the offending portion was deleted for the tape-delayed broadcasts and subsequent reruns.)

          In the aftermath, Lawrence was tapped to join a select company: performers banned from “SNL.” An “SNL” ban isn’t a formal thing. Sometimes, it’s not even a permanent thing. Case in point: Original “SNL” star Chevy Chase was said to be banned for bad behavior in the late 1990s, but he was back on the “Weekend Update” desk in 2007, and appeared last year in a bit with Justin Timberlake.

          But the “SNL” ban is nonetheless a thing. In the past 38-plus years, roughly a dozen acts and actors supposedly have gotten on the bad side of the network and/or longtime “SNL” impresario Lorne Michaels.

          Here’s a look at how some of the more notorious “SNL” performers, including Lawrence, fared after their alleged shunning. (Hint: A lifetime ban isn’t exactly a death sentence.)

          1. Adrien Brody
            The Oscar winner (“The Pianist”), who reportedly drew the show’s ire in 2003 for doing an unscripted rasta character while introducing musical act Sean Paul, went on to star in Peter Jackson’s “King Kong,” “The Darjeeling Limited,” and “Midnight in Paris.” So, his career’s fine. And Brody’s fine with “SNL,” too. “I had a great time,” the actor told Moviefone in 2012. In the same interview, Brody said, yes, he’d heard he’d been banned, but that, no, he’d never been told he’d been banned.

          2. Andy Kaufman
            The comic appeared on “SNL” more than a dozen times from 1975 to 1982, when he really, truly was banned by a vote of viewers. (The ouster came during Kaufman’s wrestling period; it also came during Michaels’s time away from the show.) Post-ban, Kaufman continued to provoke and star on TV’s “Taxi” until shortly before his death in 1984 at age 36. NBC had nothing but kind words for the “exiled” star. “We deeply regret his passing,” a network spokesman said at the time. “He was instrumental in the success of ‘Saturday Night Live.'”

          3. Martin Lawrence
            Weeks after his ill-received monologue, Martin was bounced from a scheduled appearance on the Jay Leno-hosted “Tonight Show.” (NBC, not Leno, nixed the gig.) Martin issued an apology, but didn’t back down, and didn’t at all slow down. He was, after all, famous at the time not only for his relatively family-friendly comedy series, “Martin,” but also for his uncensored stand-up on HBO’s “Def Comedy Jam” and the concert film, “You So Crazy,” released a couple of months after the “SNL” appearance. “I still feel good about my comedy because I’m speaking the truth,” he said in 1994. Lawrence eventually scored the biggest hits of his career as the PG-13-rated star of “Wild Hogs” and the “Big Momma’s House” movies.

          4. Sinéad O’Connor
            The Grammy-winning singer ignited a furor when she said, “Fight the enemy,” and tore a picture of Pope John Paul II during her musical performance on the Oct. 3, 1992 “SNL” episode. The incident was ripped on air the following week by host Joe Pesci (“She was lucky it wasn’t my show because if it was my show, I would have gave her such a smack.”), trailed O’Connor to the concert stage, where she was booed a few weeks later, and incited people to literally steamroll her CDs. Still, the incident’s impact on O’Connor’s career, which always veered out of the mainstream, is debatable. Her albums sales declined in the United States, but remained strong in Europe. On the 10th anniversary of the “SNL” appearance, O’Connor was asked if she’d change anything. “Hell, no,” she said.

          5. Steven Seagal
            To hear David Spade tell it in the the book, “Live from New York: An Uncensored History of ‘Saturday Night Live’,” Seagal nearly missed out on being branded the so-called worst “SNL” host of all-time because the show considered “replacing [him] … and just doing a cast show.” The action-hero star, accused by the comedy show of being humorless, did end up taking the stage in 1991 only to be later mocked in a 1992 Nicolas Cage “SNL” bit with Michaels. (“They probably think I’m the biggest jerk who’s ever been on the show,” Cage said. “No, no,” Michaels responded. “That would be Steven Seagal.”) Seagal subsequently continued to thrive on the big screen as the star of movies with the words “kill” and “die” in the title, as well as the box-office hit “Under Siege.” He reportedly was offended he was called the worst “SNL” host, and has maintained that he is not humorless. “I think I am very funny, everyone who knows me thinks I’m very funny,” he said in 2010. “I think I could be very good in a comedy if the right one came along.”


        • Someone clearly doesn’t like Martin Lawrence and obviously never did.

          After all this time, sure, lift the ban. Lawrence isn’t the young raunchy comedian he once was. He isn’t going to get anyone fined or cost anyone their jobs today. I would be surprised if he is really still banned. Unless he’s promoting the next Bad Boys movie, I can’t imagine he’s high on SNL’s list of must-get hosts.


      • The 10 Most Shocking Moments on Saturday Night Live:

        Martin Lawrence’s Monologue

        In 1994, Martin Lawrence made his first and only appearance after his controversial opening monologue. He started off by talking about how the censors were coming down hard on him; but apparently they weren’t doing their jobs well enough. Lawrence discussed Lorena Bobbitt and women not being able to wash certain areas of their body properly. Subsequent showings of the episode featured a graphic that showed what Lawrence had been discussing and how he almost cost everyone at Saturday Night Live their jobs. Lawrence has been banned from being on the show ever since.


      • Martin Lawrence’s ‘Martin,’ 20 years later

        The sitcom’s legacy is as hilarious as it is complicated

        By nearly any metric, whether cultural impact or relevance, Martin’s first four seasons rank as some of the finest television comedy ever produced. Its stature is eye to eye with shows such as The Jeffersons, Fresh Prince, The Cosby Show or A Different World. By the start of its fifth season, however, the empire was crumbling. Allegations of sexual harassment from Campbell made headlines in November 1996. Her lawsuit, in which she named Lawrence, stated that Campbell (herself a sexual assault survivor) had grown increasingly uncomfortable on set.

        The lawsuit stated that Lawrence’s advances had increased as the seasons progressed. There were rumors that the tension ramped up especially when Campbell became engaged to fellow actor Duane Martin. It all started coming out: from fits of rage in which he threatened to fire the cast during season two to the charge that Lawrence would grope and simulate sexual acts before crew members when they weren’t rehearsing or filming to Campbell pleading with the show’s writers to cease writing bedroom scenes by season five. Campbell alleged that HBO executives Chris Albrecht and Christopher Schwartz and HBO Independent Productions had long-standing knowledge of the abuse, yet neglected to take action.

        Lawrence denied all claims. “Martin has long been Tisha’s champion and protector,” his January 1997 statement read, “and is thus deeply hurt by these allegations.” But the public fracture of his and Campbell’s actual and scripted relationship was part of a string of bizarre situations for Lawrence, one of America’s top comic actors who was flourishing in the wake of Bad Boys and A Thin Line Between Love and Hate.

        In August 1996, he was arrested for carrying a loaded handgun in a suitcase at Hollywood Burbank Airport. Months before, he was detained by police for wandering into traffic and screaming curses in a Sherman Oaks, California, neighborhood. While no charges were filed in either case, the energy around Lawrence was overshadowing his talent. Fox Entertainment President Peter Roth attempted to quell the swelling controversy around the network’s star. “The show is called Martin, and he has proved he is capable of handling the show. Whatever is happening off the set is not affecting the show.” But it did, of course, affect the show. How could it not?

        Martin thrived on the intimacy of his and Campbell’s on-camera relationship, and even more so the unbreakable bond between its main five characters. Martin could no longer deliver on its promise. Martin was no longer entertaining to watch. Campbell functioned as Lawrence’s rock — no matter the antics of the character of “Martin,” “Gina” was there to reel him in. While Campbell helped fill living rooms with laughter — like when her head was stuck in between the Nefertiti 2000 headboard in season four’s Headin’ For Trouble — stress ate at her so much she reportedly had to be hospitalized. Campbell did eventually return to the close out the series — with very specific stipulations. Most notably, she and Lawrence were to never appear in the same scene together.

        Tommy Ford’s death in 2016 was a reminder that while the show is eternal, physical energies are not. Today, Lawrence, Campbell and the rest of the cast speak glowingly of one another and of their creation’s staying power. New and young fans canonize Martin. Even basketball star LeBron James, who was 12 when it went off the air, occasionally features clips of the show on his popular Instagram Stories and dropped $5,000 on a “Jerome”-themed Halloween costume. Big Sean saluted the sitcom via the video for his 2015 hit “Play No Games.” And Chance the Rapper, born eight months after Martin’s series premiere, used his career-defining verse on Kanye West’s “Ultralight Beam” to feature a brief but direct homage to the show: Treat the demons just like Pam/ I mean I f— with your friends, but damn, Gina.

        What Martin did was remain true to itself in an era when black creativity served as a necessary lifeline for black America: its music, its movies, its television programs and its literature. And it did so in Detroit, a city critical to the African-American experience. The unfiltered honesty of its jokes, its dilemmas — and its shortcomings — are its flawed and labyrinthine bookmarks. It’s impossible to discuss the show without its awful ending. It’s impossible to not discuss Martin’s countless memories and laughs.

        What Martin accomplished was no different from what Living Single or The Fresh Prince of Bel Air accomplished — it just pushed the line further. It irked some and won the allegiance of others. “Martin really was one of the first mainstreamings of hip-hop culture and black culture, which really is the rage now because of Atlanta, because of Queen Sugar and because of Power,” said Coker. “It proved there was a place for it, and the place was in the mainstream, not in the margins.”


    • Perhaps another problem w/ Martin Lawrence is that he never really took a lot of chances or risks (outside of his “comfort zone”) like say his “Bad Boys” co-star Will Smith. Martin seemed to me, that he could simply coast on his large personality and that could in return, elevate the otherwise poor material. Martin could get away w/ such a thing on his sitcom because it was only a half hour long when compared to a feature length film (thus, it was harder for his shtick to grow tired). Plus, Martin would normally play numerous characters on his show and not simply one person.

      But even if you look at the latter episodes of Martin’s show, it seemed like he was starting to get lazy. The final season is absolutely unwatchable. We all know about the backstage issues involving Martin and Tisha Campbell, but besides that, Martin was quite obviously phoning it in, and in return, his comedic timing was off (I wouldn’t be surprised if Martin was under the influence. Plus, the plots got more and more ridiculous and stupid.


      • Re: So Martin Lawrence sexually harassed Tisha Campbell so badly…

        Because Martin Lawrence was heavily on drugs, manic depressive and bipolar. Like someone else said, he was unpredictable, sometimes MEN had to come and PRY him off of Tisha. Don’t take this the wrong way. But do u remember how CRAZY Martin acted back then? He would come out the house butt naked and threatening to kill people while waving a loaded pistol around. Tisha was scared and INSISTED on having a panic button, they finally did it because she wouldn’t stop complaining about him. They couldn’t just fire Martin; it was his show. Yall don’t have to believe me, it doesn’t matter, but I have actually seen the thing before, so it’s whatever.


        • What’s the tea on Martin Lawrence?


          He sexually harassed Tisha very badly to the point where she sued him. Their Martin co stars were going to testify on her behalf but he settled out of court with her. According to another gossip blog, Tisha and Martin dated briefly. He fell in love. She didn’t. I don’t know about the drug part but he dated actress Lark Voorhies. Lark’s friend Dustin Diamond who costarred with her on Saved by the Bell says that Martin abused Lark so bad that she would flinch every-time a man came next to her. Some exclusive tea: My ex boyfriend used to work as a limo driver. He had Martin Lawrence one day. He said Martin was the totally opposite of what he portrays on TV. He was very quiet, deep in his thoughts, kind of sad like.


          I have this theory that Martin had threesomes with Tichina and Tisha. Tisha and Duane were together during the entirety of Martin, but I think they had sort of an open relationship before they married, leaving her “free” to occasionally have sex with Martin. Then, when she got married, she put a stop to it. Martin was heartbroken and jealous, so he verbally and sexually harassed her on set.



        Martin Lawrence is famous for his broad, over-the-top comedy so it’s not all that surprising to learn that his off-screen persona can be equally extravagant. However, not even Lawrence’s most outrageous Big Momma comedies could match the craziness of his 1996 road rage incident.

        On May the 7th 1996 in LA, the comedian was arrested and hospitalized following a spectacular nervous breakdown that occurred in the middle of Ventura Boulevard. According to eyewitnesses, Lawrence ran into the busy street swearing and screaming things like “they’re trying to kill me!” and “fight the establishment!” while carrying a loaded handgun in his pocket.

        Although police cited failure to take prescribed medication as the cause of his fit, his publicist insisted that the incident was simply due to exhaustion and dehydration. Whatever the cause, this was neither the first nor the last of the Bad Boys star’s many outbursts. Thankfully, while his screen appearances are somewhat less frequent today, his health problems seem to have subsided.


        • I think that Dave Chappelle chose Martin Lawrence because he was to be totally blunt, “a grown ass man” at the time. Giving an example of a corrupt and toxic environment driving a man in his thirties to the brink, shows how bad it is.


        • Actors who could have died preparing for their role

          Martin Lawrence (Big Momma’s House)

          Comedians always need to have a joke or two up their sleeve, but the real challenge of comedy lies in the physicality of the performance, something Martin Lawrence knows all too well following his part in Big Momma’s House.

          To prepare for the latex fat suit that the role of Big Momma would require him to wear, Lawrence decided to jog wearing heavy clothing and a plastic suit in 100-degree heat. At the end of his ill-fated run, Lawrence collapsed due to extreme dehydration and heat exhaustion. When he first arrived at the hospital, his body temperature hit a startling 107 degrees and a ventilator was required to help him breathe after he slipped into a coma that lasted for three days.

          When Lawrence woke up, the doctors performed a scan that revealed that there was no permanent brain damage and kidney dialysis would not be required, even though the attending physicians initially feared that this might be the case. Big Momma’s House went on to devour the competition and become a surprise box office smash, even kickstarting its very own franchise. Was it worth this huge risk to Lawrence’s health?


    • Thankfully (if you want to put it that way), I found full footage of Martin Lawrence’s infamous “SNL” monologue:


  2. I went to see Do the Right Thing on opening night and was a big fan of the film.

    Unfortunately, not long after its release, we had a bad situation crop up in my home town of Virginia Beach. There was a yearly week of frivolity attended by all African-American fraternities held there. I’m not sure how many times the event had been held previously, but it had in fact been held before without any significant troubles. For some reason the local police force and the members of the fraternities had a particularly bad time with one another that time around. The frustration amongst those who had come to the shore to spend their money boiled over and we ended up with looting and destruction of property. Trash cans were thrown through the front windows of stores. I don’t believe that Do the Right Thing motivated the behavior, but it did seem to guide the specifics when it was time to act out.

    I’ve met members of the Virginia Beach police force (in social situations) who made me understand the frustrations of the folks who reacted so badly. The language and attitudes were disheartening.

    I don’t really have anything to add about Lawrence’s career because Do the Right Thing is the only film of his that I am sure that I have seen from start to finish. I know I saw parts of Death at a Funeral, Bad Boys (or was it Bad Boys II? I’m not sure) and Boomerang on cable. Clearly, I’m not his target demographic.

    Based on your write-up, it appears that his talent is relatively thin while his psychology is a little unstable. He performed pretty well at the box office, so he continued to work well past when his behavior should have sent his star south already.

    A team-up with Grammar sounds like a big time win/lose proposition. Grammar has had his own struggles with substance abuse and bad behavior. I hope they both have recovered.


    • I find myself wondering about Lawrence’s level of talent. What the guy has going for him is charisma. I remember seeing Bad Boys. It was one of those movies I screened before it opened. I had zero expectations. I wasn’t familiar with Smith or Lawrence at the time, but I knew lots of people who were fans. I wasn’t especially impressed with the movie itself. It was the prototype for the modern day Michael Bay movie which is to say it’s too big, too loud and too dumb, but entertaining if that’s your thing. But I was very impressed with the natural screen presence of Smith, Lawrence and Leoni.

      If you would have asked me at the time who had more of a future in movies, I would have had a hard time picking between Lawrence and Smith. They seemed on even footing. Neither was classically handsome, but both were good looking in their own way. Smith more so. Both had an easy going charm. They both seemed to be destined for big things.

      But Smith was determined to forge himself into the next big movie star. He did so with cunning and single-minded determination. A few short summers later, he was the king of the 4th of July. On the other hand, Lawrence just went berserk and imploded.

      If Lawrence had followed Smith’s strategy, there’s no guarantee he would have been a big international movie star. But I do think he would have been bigger. He has a lot of the same strengths and weaknesses as Smith. He just needed to make more savvy choices.


      • I think the main drawing point of the first “Bad Boys” movie (and I recall Will Smith himself saying this on MTV when reflecting on his career) was that you had arguably the two biggest black actors on TV at the time joining forces. I do for one thing, find it incredibly funny that Martin Lawrence was billed ahead of Will Smith since I automatically assumed that Smith was a bigger name even back then (especially considering that “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” debuted about two years prior to “Martin”). Even in “Bad Boys II”, Lawrence was billed ahead of Smith.

        I wonder if another issue w/ Martin Lawrence in regards to why his film career reach its full potential if you want to call it that, is that maybe he really can’t carry a film by himself (I’ve already said that perhaps part of Martin’s problem was that he couldn’t evolve in his performances and/or comedic approach and thus, quickly became stale) unlike Will Smith. If you’ve noticed, much of Martin’s best reviewed and/or most commercially successful films either had him as part of an ensemble (e.g. “Do the Right Thing”, “House Party”, and “Wild Hogs”) or was paired w/ just as (if not even more) charismatic co-star like Will Smith and to a lesser extent, Eddie Murphy (“Life”). Even on his TV show (at least the first few years), Martin had a solid supporting cast to feed/play off of. It’s interesting that the biggest box office hit of Martin Lawrence’s career in which he had to rely on his name alone was the first “Big Momma’s House” (which was basically, “Mrs. Doubtfire” meets “Stakeout”).


        • The pairing of Smith and Lawrence was definitely the main selling point of Bad Boys. I think general audiences were only vaguely aware of Martin. But most folks at least knew of The Fresh Prince. But to the target demo, these guys were big stars and Bad Boys was a BIG movie. I remember the anticipation for Bad Boys very clearly. People who watched those shows were jazzed. People who didn’t probably caught it on video.


      • I think that part of Martin Lawrence’s initial appeal so to speak was that he was this brash, energetic guy. Unfortunately, that sort of thing only has such a shelf-life before people get worn out of your act. Just like other comedians on the WTHHT list part of Martin’s problem is that he really is no longer “cool”. He’s just this awfully pathetic middle-aged guy now, who let himself go physically.


        • I think you hit the nail on the head with that one. I never considered Lawrence and Chevy Chase before, but there are definitely similarities.


        • I actually wasn’t really thinking specifically of any sort of comparison or analogy between Martin Lawrence and Chevy Chase other than maybe, both never really evolved or modified their respective comedic styles as they got older. Martin like Chevy Chase, has put on a significant amount of weight in recent years, which of course doesn’t help much.


      • “I find myself wondering about Lawrence’s level of talent. What the guy has going for him is charisma.”

        Bullseye! That’s it right there. Lawrence, while talented, was always more of a personality than an actor.

        I always felt that Richard Pryor was a better stand-up comic than actor, although part of the problem in that regard was when he tried to show range audiences weren’t interested.. But as a comedian, he was pretty much peerless (George Carlin his only true rival).

        While Lawrence was very funny and a very good performer, the type of comedy he did lacked the depth of a Pryor or Carlin. In some ways, he’s closer to Eddie Murphy as a comedian, albeit even raunchier.

        But his limitations as an actor, combined with his psychological implosion, meant that he was stuck once his moment had passed.


        • ‘Runteldat!’ Martin Lawrence is no Richard Pryor:

          By Marshall Fine
          The (Westchester, N.Y.) Journal News

          Martin Lawrence has something of a martyr complex and he isn’t afraid to air it publicly in “Martin Lawrence Live: Runteldat,” a film culled from a pair of concerts he gave in Washington, D.C., earlier this year.

          “Runteldat” allows the comedian to compare himself to, among others, Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Jr., even while doing a routine about how satisfying it would have been, just once, to see MLK kick butt, rather than turn the other cheek.

          The name that is never spoken in this film but the one that seems to hover over everything is Richard Pryor.

          “Runteldat” is a direct descendant of “Richard Pryor Live on the Sunset Strip,” in terms of Lawrence’s attempt to express a worldview and use his own fabled foibles as food for both laughs and thought.

          “Sunset Strip” allowed Pryor to plumb the depths of his freebase addiction — including the time he set himself on fire — in funny detail. He did it with a certain humility, expressing how lucky he was to be alive even as he wrung painful laughs from his own weakness.

          Conversely, the centerpiece of “Runteldat” is supposed to be Lawrence’s frank discussion about his various encounters with the law over the past several years: “I ain’t waitin’ for the ‘E! True Hollywood Story’,” he says.

          But where Pryor was humble, Lawrence is defensive. Even as he recounts an incident where police captured him after raving wildly in the middle of a Los Angeles intersection with a gun in his belt, he’s derisive of the press coverage. He says they blew it out of proportion (even as he admits that, in fact, the spree was drug-induced).

          Lawrence is of the philosophy that everyone stumbles on the bumpy road of life; he just happens to be more visible when he does. Don’t hate him because he’s human; hate the press for exposing his humanity.

          He also has a few words for critics, most of which cannot be reprinted in a family newspaper. “They’re like the scum of the earth,” is one of his kinder assessments. This lengthy riff thus inoculates him against bad reviews, which he can ascribe to hurt feelings on the part of critics who were stung by his remarks. I know I shall try to rise above.

          There is, of course, another huge difference between Lawrence and Pryor — Pryor is funny and Lawrence, for the most part, is not. Pryor’s true descendant, in terms of his ability to perceive the larger human comedy, is Chris Rock.

          Lawrence is just a guy with a lot of attitude and some funny faces. His comedy premises are often hackneyed or just plain crude, calculated to provoke shocked laughter, without following up on a deeper level.

          Lawrence does have an uncanny talent for sketching characters with just a slight change of voice or accent and attitude. His impression of a white hoodlum cursing out a cop (to illustrate something a black person could never get away with) is priceless. And a lengthy routine about a man being unwisely candid with his wife after having too much to drink is as precisely observed as one of Pryor’s Mudbone routines, if a little too long.

          Too much of the film is spent with Lawrence sermonizing about brotherhood and getting along in the wake of September 11. But even then, he undercuts his own “We are all one” message with mean-spirited routines, such as his post 9-11 urge to physically confront anyone who looked like an Arab. And his routines about women have a misogynistic tang that’s impossible to miss.

          The problem is that his material is rarely as strong as his performance. Most of his bits rely on his physical and vocal characterizations; but too often, the characters are the joke and there is no punch line.


  3. The Bad Boys movies:

    Post by agent817 on Jun 7, 2011 at 12:57pm
    What was your opinion about those two movies? While I liked both movies, I prefer the first one more these days because I noticed a lot of complaints about Bad Boys II. Okay, for starters, I do like BB2, and did enjoy it, but I can see a lot of the reasons for the complaints. One thing is that the movie was a little too long, another was the forced humor (Especially the electronics store scene and the scene when Martin and Will were interrogating the teenage boy at the door). Also, a lot of the explosions and action scenes were rather over the top.

    Post by The Booty Disciple on Jun 7, 2011 at 2:18pm
    The first one is enjoyable, and I dig the humor and interplay between Lawrence and Smith. It’s pretty much another buddy-cop movie ala Lethal Weapon, 48 Hours, or Beverly Hills Cop, but stuck in Miami this time and updated to the mid-90s. Big whoop in that department. Smith and Lawrence did a great job of making it their own, though, even with the predictable story elements.

    The second one was way over the top, and pushed suspension of disbelief way too far. It was over the top, seemed to push past good taste, and seemed needlessly brutal. I generally skip it, and was even disappointed when I saw it in theaters years ago.

    Post by agent817 on Jun 8, 2011 at 9:56am
    Well, I completed my Bad Boys marathon yesterday by watching both movies. Since I watched them in descending order, I can honestly say that while both films were over the top, I can say that the first one was definitely different and better than the second. I can see why people complained about the second movie. I still liked it, though, but I can understand the over-the-top stuff and the dark humor, like when Martin’s character unwittingly took X, same with the electronics store stuff, but I found that part to be sort of funny, but I still remember watching it at 17 and the part with the little boy, I was a little surprised about that bit.

    Post by The Booty Disciple on Oct 1, 2011 at 5:56pm
    The first one was a pretty slick film, all things considered. No one expected high brow entertainment, but it actually had a great combination of action, character interplay, and a reasonable plot.

    The second one was way too over the top, and pushed the inconceivability of things way too far. I’m willing to buy in to an extent, but the second one didn’t just make me take my rose colored glasses off, it made me take them back to the optometrist and tell him to give my money back.

    Post by Lick Ness Monster on Oct 2, 2011 at 9:31am
    IMO, both movies are quite atrocious. Having said that, the first is the superior of the two. The second might very well be the worst movie I’ve ever seen in a theater. Incomprehensible plot, unbelievably unfunny “humor,” and the usual Bay ADD shaki-cam at its MOST grating. It all adds up to one big s*** sandwich, but the humor is really where these movies fail. The Bad Boys flicks basically have one joke – Smith and Lawrence calling each other some variation of a moron. To me, it’s one of those things that’s funny for about five minutes but then gets old REALLY fast.

    Slightly OT, but I have never laughed at Martin Lawrence in anything. He might very well be the most unfunny human being on the planet.


  4. I wasn’t a big enough fan of the first one to watch the second. Frankly, Leoni was my favorite thing about Bad Boys. Also, by the time the sequel came out, my Michael Bay ban was in effect.


  5. I honestly had no idea that Martin Lawrence got his start from Star Search. In retrospect it’s amazing how many people got their start from that show: according to Wikipedia, more than a few big names pop up as former contestants: Martin Lawrence, Britney Spears, Beyoncé, Adam Sandler, Justin Timberlake, Kevin James, Alanis Morissette, Christina Aguilera, Dave Chapelle, Leann Rimes, Usher, Rosie O’Donnell, Drew Carey, Sharon Stone, and so on. Ironically, not a single one of the many Competition Winners ever became famous. I guess competing on Star Search would do wonders for your career, but if you won the whole thing it was the kiss of death.


  6. Bad Movie Beatdown (w/ Rap Critic): Big Mommas – Like Father:

    Film Brain reviews a movie so bad, he’s got back-up in the form of Rap Critic!


    • 14 Actors Who Desperately Need A Hit Movie

      Martin Lawrence

      To be fair to him, Martin Lawrence doesn’t actually have that many box office duds to his name, though the diminishing returns of Big Mommas: Like Father, Like Son nevertheless spoke volumes of how his favor with audiences nevertheless started faltering a few years ago.

      Perhaps in order to spare himself the indignity of flop after flop, Lawrence has basically taken himself out of the running in recent years, and aside from his cancelled 2014 TV show Partners, hasn’t been up to much at all.

      At least Lawrence can sit comfortable knowing that two Bad Boys sequels are in the works, and considering how highly anticipated they are, they both seem destined to be at least decent box office successes. He’ll be fine…as long as the films actually get made, of course.


  7. I didn’t see the american version of “Death at a Funeral”, here it’s been released direct to video (like almost all Lawrence movies except “Bad Boys” and “Big Momma” franchise), but I saw the original version and it’s really one of the funnniest comedies of the last decade. I simply loved it


  8. How the heck did I miss a new WTHH post? No excuse other than that I’ve been mired in a very important week, in terms of college football. not only has the week been traumatic but earlier in the season, my longtime favorite football blog host decided to take time off to live a real life. I know… i know…. and anyway that necessitated finding a new football blog. So now…. after maybe a few more nights where i keep dreaming about The Game but the ending doesn’t change…. back to more creative pursuits. Enough about football. Great post as always Lebeau. Don’t ever leave. 🙂


    • Leave? Never. I take the occasional break. But as long as I am able, I’ll always come back. This is obviously a hobby. But I have a very long-term goal. I expect to be writing WTHH articles until my fingers don’t work any more.


      • Oh, LeBeau, I LOVED hearing this. Reading your WTHHT series quickly became a favorite pasttime of mine from the moment I came across it some 6 or so months ago. (In fact, it’s the only blog I frequent outside of my usual food ones. That’s how awesomely engaging I find your series. 🙂 I’m probably not your usual or intended audience, but I hope you’ll have me, anyway. LOL). Though, my opinions sometimes differ from yours, I love the objectiveness with which you approach every one of your WTHHT posts and the humor you interject into each one. Even when I’m completely uninterested in one of the subjects, I read it anyway because I know it’ll be a good read, full of witty commentary and interesting facts. I’m so happy to hear that you plan on doing this for years to come. Of course, I’d manage and go on living without your WTHHT series, but, really, would I even WANT to? 🙂


        • Liz, you’re too too kind. This series is fun for me to write. The interactions the readers really make the experience. The reader response has been consistently overwhelming. It keeps me motivated. Any time real life drags me away from blogging for an extended period of time, I know I need to get back to my readers who are patiently waiting for more. Usually the New Year brings a pretty steady stream of new articles. I’m hoping 2014 will be no different.


  9. Lebeau, you have to edit this line I think?

    “If you look at Rotten Tomatoes, Lawrence has had a movie with more than 50% positive reviews since the first House Party in 1990!”

    And I am still biting my nails waiting for Stallone and JCVD.
    Man I remember when they (along with Arnold, SS, etc) used to rule the BO.


    • Thanks for the catch. I will make the change immediately.

      I’m looking to do JCVD very soon.



      An observable, fast-talking party man Darnell Wright, gets his punishment when one of his conquests takes it personally and comes back for revenge in this ‘Fatal Attraction’-esque comic thriller.

      I thought his film was a hit. It was at the middle of his stardom and seems to be the film that telegraphed his downfall.

      As this film wasn’t watered down or silly as his other films that seemed more aimed at general audiences. This film is definitely more for adults and taps into his sense of humor like his stand up. That some might find a little blue

      The film is enjoyable as it seems more dramatic and thriller that has a sense of humor, but stays in a more dark mood.

      Martin Lawrence stars, directs and co-wrote the film. Which might prove to be a bit too much. As the film switches between tone and genre fine. The problem is that he film never feels rooted into anything such as the characters or even the situations and scenes. They fly by so fast before you can really get a feel of anything. The scenes linger a little too long especially in scenes that are more dramatic. That feel like overkill and being over dramatic. Which the dialogue doesn’t help.

      Though he doesn’t do badly. It feels it might have been too much. As it’s not quite the big budgeted debacle as fellow comedian Eddie Murphy’s directorial debut HARLEM NIGHTS. This production is small enough to be an interesting fit. As it truly differs from most of the films on his resume. It is also a role he had to write and direct himself as most in Hollywood would never cast him int he playboy type of role.

      The film is a good time, but doesn’t offer anything new and seems to become episodic I between it’s main story line. As usually these plot threads really go nowhere, but at least they ground us into Lawrence’s character life a bit more.

      It is easy to write this off as a black comedic version of fatal attraction and to a degree it is, but it is also it’s own creation. While if you are a fan of Martin Lawrence the comedian. You will see and hear a bunch of jokes he has done before.

      The film tries to make the audience take a look at the false promises ladies men give women and how it might come to affect these women as we see the aftermath. The problem is that instead of exploring that story line and psychology more deeply. The film takes a far easier route and just has the woman be psycho almost form the get go. So being burned by him leads to an easy, hop, skip and jump into stalking him and going crazy. Where as if she had been sane and we see how he turned her crazy. That would be a breath of fresh air and not make his character so heroic and likable and somewhat deserving of the audiences sympathy. Where as if the film had gone the more dramatic psychological route. It would have challenged the actors more and make us question out loyalties as both don’t deserve the level of troubles they get into. Though would leave very little room for comedy. Then again that might have turned the audience off as it would be more of a challenge rather then entertainment.

      What keeps the film interesting is that while it goes for a seasoned playboy falling for his prey. Though then at the same time falling for the good girl he should have always been with. That either ending could have provided salvation for the character. It’s just as he was falling for one the other came along and he made a choice that dooms him to a degree. Even if it some scenes are heavy handed. As well as the gestures. As no one was longing for a Martin Lawrence love scene, not played for laughs. Also of all the times he decides to not show up and break his promise to Lynn Whitfield’s character is on her birthday. Which magnifies the melodrama and her actions.

      Though again in this film Martin Lawrence seems to be his most natural and his character doesn’t feel as much as a put on or stretch for him. Like in the film BLACK KNIGHT where he seems to old and too smart to still be a scamming janitor at an amusement park.

      The ending seems especially ridiculous as it seems more like the end of a police procedural episode rather than a movie.

      Grade: C+


  10. If this TV pilot I was in gets sold, I hope my career doesn’t turn out like Martin’s!


  11. No offense but are you fucking kidding me with this?


  12. I think Martin Lawrence should do a comedy using Shenenehs in a movie on the way to the top meaning that she trying to be successful,buy trying to start her own business of doing hair in the big city,it probably be funny ads he’ll I will run to the movie to see that.


  13. I never realized Martin’s movies received such low ratings! What does it say about me that I enjoyed nearly all of them! He seems to be more of a “people’s” actor rather than a critics. Blue Streak is a classic! A CLASSIC! “He’s high!”


    • daffystardust

      I’ve never been a big fan of the variations on the term “people’s” actor/director/musician versus “critic’s”. It suggests that critics or those who tend to agree with them are not people.


      • I think it comes about when “experts” give their opinion — in contrast to the average person. The critics might say a movie is pure pabulum without any artistic merit whatsoever, total rubbish! And the guy down the street might think it’s a wonderful action packed comedy that made him smile and laugh for a few hours. You see that quite often on rotten tomatoes. Critics rate the film 20-30% and the viewers give it 70-90%


        • daffystardust

          I’m never going to ask anybody to not like the entertainment that makes them happy. That’s what it’s there for. But your use of the quotation marks around the word expert reveals a general contempt for those with knowledge in today’s society. If you’re reading the right critic, then you actually are dealing with an expert. These are often people who have degrees in film/music/literature. That doesn’t mean that you should have to like the same stuff they do, but it does mean that they have a knowledge base which lends some credibility to their opinions.


        • One thing that I think accounts for the differences between the average Joe’s opinion and that of professional film critics is the number of movies they watch. If you have to watch the majority of Hollywood releases as most film critics do, eventually, you get really sick of middle-of-the-road crap. Even a bad movie can be more interesting than watching another lazy action/comedy which relies on the lead actor’s star power instead of a halfway decent script.

          On the other hand, the average Joe watches a lot fewer movies. And for very different reasons. A Martin Lawrence fan seeks out these movies because they enjoy getting away from their daily life for 90 minutes. They’re not sick of him or this style of movie. They aren’t looking for anything more than a diversion.

          But for a critic, movies like Blue Streak are the daily grind they are trying to get away from. Sitting through a Martin Lawrence movie is that task you don’t really want to do. But there’s a deadline approaching and there’s no getting out of it. And unlike a fan, odds are the critic has had to sit through the majority of Lawrence’s films. Most fans have probably missed some of their favorite actor’s less successful efforts. But the critics have to sit through all of it.

          I’m with Daffy on this one. Critics get things wrong from time to time. But they tend to have a better track record than the public which flocks to crap on a regular basis. But I also understand the value of getting a couple hours of entertainment wherever you can find it.


        • That’s my thought on it as well. A critic generally thinks about more factors than “was it entertaining”? Which I believe is the regular person’s main criteria for if it’s a good movie or not.

          Even I feel a similar way from time to time — you’ll hear people talk about a new movie as if it were this great original piece, and here I am thinking “What?! That story has been done at least a dozen times before AND much better!” I’d agree the professional reviewers have a much larger database to compare the movies to on average. But… they probably couldn’t keep their job for long if all they wrote was “an enjoyable, but forgettable film.” Do most people prefer a trip to McDonald’s over some fancy high end and original food dish?


  14. Lorenzo Dampies

    LeBeau great article as always. I always read you WTHH articles, some more than once but this is the first time I’ve commented. You’ve written about Martin Lawrence and Eddie Murphy. And they really reminded me of Chris Tucker. Black comedian turned successful movie star. He’s worked with Tarantino and Luc Besson and was once the highest paid actor in Hollywood. Then he just disapeared. Would he qualify for WTHH?


    • The Lost Roles of Chris Tucker:

      In 2006, Chris Tucker was the highest paid actor in Hollywood, receiving a $25 million payday for appearing in Rush Hour 3. He even negotiated a larger salary and top billing over co-star Jackie Chan, who had more credits and had been a movie star for much longer. Most actors tend to capitalize on that kind of success by flooding the marketplace with more movies while they’re still at the height of their popularity. Not Chris Tucker. He’s been very picky with his projects, only starring in two movies in the past 10 years — Rush Hour and Rush Hour 2 — while his peers like Jason Bateman, Justin Timberlake, and Emma Stone have starred in two movies this summer alone. It’s almost as if Chris Tucker could sense the public getting sick of his squealy voice and limited persona.

      While the reasons for his retreat from stardom remain unclear, Chris Tucker has been attached to dozens of projects over the years that never made into production. Read on to learn about the classic Peter Sellers character he almost played, the film that would have marked the acting debut of President Bill Clinton, Chris Tucker’s Bollywood remake, and more proposed movies that make Tracy Jordan’s starring vehicles from 30 Rock seem tame. For those wondering why Chris Tucker hasn’t appeared in many movies lately, taking a look at the movies he almost made should turn that curiosity into exuberant joy that none of them came to be.

      1. Lethal Weapon 4 (1998)
        The role: Detective Lee Butters
        Who got it: Chris Rock
        Busy filming the first Rush Hour at the time, Chris Tucker opted out of this Lethal Weapon sequel, allowing another foul-mouthed stand-up named Chris to take the part. Making Rush Hour, which was in many ways a successor to the Lethal Weapon series, instead of this was a smart move. Rush Hour became Tucker’s biggest hit at the time and turned him into a major star. In Rush Hour, Chris Tucker was front and center, but the Lethal Weapon part was a supporting role on par with his turns in Jackie Brown and The Fifth Element (which I’d say is about the maximum amount of Chris Tucker I can handle in a movie). Although he’d toplined a couple movies beforehand, Rush Hour proved Chris Tucker was a bankable movie star.
      2. Any Given Sunday (1999)
        The role: Willie Beamen
        Who got it: Jamie Foxx
        Chris Tucker turned down the role of a major league football player in this Oliver Stone drama. Jamie Foxx, who belonged to Tucker’s class of comedic actors, took the part. Unlike Tucker, he had played high school football, so he had some actual experience to draw upon. Any Given Sunday served as Jamie Foxx’s breakthrough dramatic role and the start of a path that led the actor to his 2005 Oscar win for Ray. Chris Tucker accepting this part may have put a stop to Foxx’s ascent in Hollywood, but it’s hard to imagine Tucker would have used this role as a springboard to the same success. Chris Tucker probably wouldn’t have transitioned into a career as a respected dramatic actor if he’d taken this role, but no one was expecting then-comic actor Jamie Foxx to rise to the occasion either.

      3. Next Friday (2000) and 4. Friday After Next (2002)
        The role: Smokey
        Who got it: Mike Epps (playing a different character)
        Tucker turned down the chance to reprise the role of Smokey in the second and third installments in this stoner series, attributing his decision to having become a born-again Christian. Mike Epps was brought in to fill in as Ice Cube’s new sidekick. Although they made more money, these Friday sequels were never as acclaimed or as relevant as the original, and that’s largely due to Tucker’s absence. Chris Tucker’s career was peaking around the time of the Friday sequels; he was still riding high on the success of the first two Rush Hours. Appearing in these silly stoner romps would have been a step down for him both in terms of pay and the popularity of his films.

      4. Agent Double-O-Soul (unproduced)
        This ill-conceived spy comedy had Chris Tucker attached to star in 1998, with Mariah Carey signed on to make her movie debut as his love interest. In the film, which was written by Antwone Fisher (yes, that Antwone Fisher), Tucker would have played a hip spy with a slew of crazy gadgets, including sunglasses with a built-in gun that is set off by ear-wiggling, an air conditioned trench coat, a talking car, and a “midget sidekick.” Production was scheduled to begin in the fall of 1998, but things never got off the ground. By 2001, Mariah Carey had made her starring film debut in Glitter, a massive bomb, and she dropped out of this project. 2002 saw the release of Undercover Brother, the Eddie Griffin spy comedy that seems a little too similar to Agent Double-O-Soul. Perhaps the emergence of Undercover Brother and Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me, which also featured similar plot elements to Agent Double-O-Soul, put the kibosh on this one. If Agent Double-O-Soul had received the tepid reaction that Undercover Brother or Mariah Carey’s Glitter garnered, then it would have taken some momentum out of Chris Tucker’s career at a time when he was coming off a major hit and it seemed like he was ramping up to be a major force in the entertainment industry.

      5. Black Knight (2001)
        The role: Jamal Walker
        Who got it: Martin Lawrence
        Chris Tucker and F. Gary Gray, the director of the original Friday, were attached to this time travel comedy, but they both dropped out due to concerns with the script. In the movie, Martin Lawrence plays an employee at a medieval theme park who is sent back in time to the Middle Ages and spends the next 90 minutes complaining about the lack of indoor plumbing and leering at medieval women. Chris Tucker was best served to stay as far away from this one as possible.

      6. Mr. President (unproduced)
        Back in 1999, when the idea of a Black U.S. President was an outlandish fantasy fit for a broad Hollywood comedy, Chris Tucker was set to make his directorial debut with Mr. President, in which he was to star as an average guy who is unexpectedly elected to this nation’s highest office, becoming the first Black man to hold the position. The project was racing Chris Rock’s Head of State to production, which featured an identical premise and a similar star in the title role. Rumors of a feud between Tucker and Rock were denied by Tucker, but it’s hard to believe there wasn’t a sense of competition over this. These films were passion projects for the two comedians, as both stars were set to direct their respective first Black president movies. Head of State made it to theaters in 2003, before Mr. President even began filming, but Chris Tucker has insisted that his movie was going to be produced as recently as 2007. Tucker did quite a bit of work to research his role. He visited troops in Virginia, volunteered to promote voter registration, and consulted with Bill Clinton, Nelson Mandela, and Jesse Jackson, the first major Black presidential candidate. By 2008, Barack Obama was elected president in real life, and this movie was scrapped. The most interesting thing about Mr. President, though, is that Chris Tucker once claimed that Bill Clinton wanted to play a supporting role, saying in 2001:

      “President Clinton said he wanted to do a cameo. But he doesn’t want to play himself. He wants to play a regular person in the movie.”

      I find all of this pretty hard to believe, but these words did come out of Chris Tucker’s mouth. It’s absurd to think of Bill Clinton appearing in a comedy, but him playing a character and not just cameoing as himself is fucking ridiculous. Although Mr. President would have been without a doubt god-awful, I feel like we really missed out on something as a nation here. Mr. President could have seen Bill Clinton becoming the heir to Rodney Dangerfield’s throne and been the start of a promising comedy career.

      1. The Pink Panther (2006)
        The role: Inspector Jacques Closeau
        Who got it: Steve Martin
        Producer Ivan Reitman considered Chris Tucker to play Inspector Closseau in this affront to comedy. Tucker was pretty far along in the casting process, having participated in a table reading with Reitman and studio executives, but things didn’t get much further than that. And people complain about Steve Martin tarnishing Peter Sellers’s legacy.
    • Stand-up comedy concert film (unproduced)
      In 2001, Chris Tucker announced plans to film a stand-up comedy performance for theatrical release. Tucker’s roots are in stand-up; he was a frequent Def Jam comedian in his early days. The film, though, never materialized, but Chris Tucker has talked it up as recently as 2007, making comparisons to Eddie Murphy’s Raw and Richard Pryor’s Live in Concert. Those are pretty ambitious movies to compare his to, two of the most prolific stand-up films ever made. There’s obviously no way Chris Tucker’s movie would have been able to reach the heights of Murphy or Pryor’s stand-up films. These stand-up comedy concert films seem like kind of an outdated concept, since video of stand-up has been readily available on TV and the Internet for a number of years, and there’s nothing about stand-up that lends itself to the big screen. Although I loved Louis C.K.’s recent film Hilarious, the last stand-up movie that was a big hit was The Original Kings of Comedy over a decade ago. These movies can usually turn a quick profit, especially with a big star like Chris Tucker at the center, as they’re cheap to make when compared to a narrative film. Nevertheless, a Chris Tucker stand-up film just seems unnecessary (especially considering that theatrical stand-up movies seem unnecessary on the whole these days).

    • Knight and Day (2010)
      The role: Roy Miller
      Who got it: Tom Cruise
      Knight and Day was in Development Hell for several years before it made it to theaters, causing audiences to feel like they were in Actual Hell. Originally, Chris Tucker and Eva Mendes were attached to star in the film around 2005 when it was titled Trouble Man. Trouble Man’s a bad name for a movie, almost sounding like a bad Japanese translation, but it pales in comparison to the film’s eventual title, Knight and Day. No one in the movie is named Knight, and it doesn’t feature any knights. It’s a completely nonsensical, unjustified pun.

    • Tower Heist (set for release later in 2011)
      Tower Heist is an upcoming Ben Stiller-Eddie Murphy comedy from “director” Brett Ratner, who “collaborated” with Chris Tucker on the Rush Hour “films.” It’s set for release this fall and revolves around a group of people who band together to rob residents of Trump Tower. This is another one that was stuck in Development Hell for several years. In development since the early 2000s, Tower Heist was originally called Trump Heist and was envisioned as a “black Ocean’s Eleven.” Ratner wanted Chris Rock, Chris Tucker, Eddie Murphy, Dave Chappelle, and Sidney Poitier to play the main characters, but Murphy was the only one who signed on. Ben Stiller, Casey Affleck, Matthew Broderick, and Alan Alda ended up joining the cast, which, needless to say, screwed up that whole “black Ocean’s Eleven” thing. Ratner’s been responsible for Chris Tucker’s three biggest hits (Rush Hour 1, 2, and 3), but it doesn’t seem like this one is going to be as popular as that franchise was.

    • Untitled Chris Tucker-Jackie Chan Reunion Film (unproduced)
      Back in 2009, another Chris Tucker-Jackie Chan project was announced that was going to be a separate entity from the Rush Hour series. Little information about the film surfaced, but it now seems to have fallen apart. I know the Rush Hour movies were very popular and largely because of these two stars and their chemistry, but I feel like audiences should have gotten their fill by now. Are people really clamoring for another Tucker-Chan joint? It’s about time we turn our backs on this revolting era in cinematic history. The Rush Hour Years should be behind us by now.

    • Going into drama
      In interviews, Chris Tucker has mentioned his lofty ambitions to branch out into drama, saying he’d like to try his hand at movies similar to Forrest Gump and The Color Purple. It sounds like a bad idea to me, but a lot of comedic actors have pulled off this transition gracefully, and it’s not always the ones you’d expect who find that kind of success with it. I don’t think anyone’s begging for Tucker to take a dramatic turn, but he sure does enjoy talking about it a lot:

    • “I want to do movies about Black history and Black history doesn’t begin in America. We need to go back to Africa. Those stories need to be told. It’s good to do movies that are fun. But sometimes you need to do something to inspire people.”

      I don’t know about you, but I was pretty inspired by Money Talks.

      1. Mr. S: My Life with Frank Sinatra (unproduced)
        The role: George Jacobs
        In 2007, Chris Tucker signed on to star in Mr. S: My Life with Frank Sinatra, an adaptation of the memoir by Frank Sinatra’s longtime chauffeur George Jacobs. Jacobs’s book offered a rare behind-the-scenes look at Sinatra’s life and that of the Rat Pack. Brett Ratner was attached to direct, but Ratner and Tucker never got the ball rolling.
    • Gangsta, M.D. (unproduced)
      Easily the most absurd project on this list — crazier than titling a movie Agent Double-O-Soul or Bill Clinton deciding to try acting or the idea of Chris Tucker playing Inspector Closseau — is Gangsta, M.D. Based on a hit Bollywood film called Munnabhai M.B.B.S., Gangsta, M.D. was to star Chris Tucker as a street thug who enrolls in medical school to placate his mother. This one was announced in 2006, but Chris Tucker seems to have dropped out of his commitment, just like he’s done with every project in the past decade that didn’t include the phrase “Can you understand the words that are coming out of my mouth?” in the script. It’s a shame Gangsta, M.D. never materialized, as it combines so many things I love: Chris Tucker, Bollywood, and gangsters going to medical school. I can just see the poster hanging in Tracy Jordan’s office now. The 30 Rock writers could save a lot of time and effort by just cribbing from abandoned Chris Tucker vehicles to flesh out their cartoonish character’s fake filmography.

    • Django Unchained (set for release in late 2012)
      The role: Django
      Who got it: Jamie Foxx
      Along with Will Smith, Jamie Foxx, and Idris Elba, Chris Tucker was one of the actors in talks for the lead part in Quentin Tarantino’s next movie, Django Unchained. The film is the story of an escaped slave who takes revenge on his former master, all shot in the style of a spaghetti western. Jamie Foxx will be starring alongside a bevy of acclaimed actors that includes Leonardo DiCaprio, Samuel L. Jackson, Christoph Waltz, and Kevin Costner. Tucker seems like he would have been an odd choice for a film that has a strong chance at being an awards contender, but he has done quality work with Tarantino before in Jackie Brown.

    • Quentin Tarantino also has that fascination with rediscovering forgotten actors and using them in new and interesting ways. If Chris Tucker were cast, Tarantino could have done for him what he’s done for John Travolta, Robert Forster, and Darryl Hannah. Landing the lead part in Django Unchained would have been a boon to Chris Tucker’s career. He’s turned down and dropped out of a lot of projects over the past several years, but his actions were justified most of the time, as many of the roles that were offered to him sound abysmal to begin with. Unlike most of the films he almost ended up in, Django Unchained seems like it may be destined for Oscar glory, rather than the bargain bin at Wal-Mart.


  • C’MON HOLLYWOOD: What the hell happened to Chris Tucker?

    …what the hell happened to Chris Tucker?

    by J.A. Hamilton

    The ebb and flow of comedy seems to fluctuate back and forth every ten years or so. The eighties gave us Eddie Murphy, a man who’s comedic exploits are not only renown but have even become a base or stepping stone for today’s comedians. But the late nineties saw Eddie begin to lose form and I truly believe that it was a variety of things that led to this; fatherhood being one, but comedy standards and etiquette no doubt also played a role. The trash talking, vulgar comedy days seemed numbered until one of my buddies introduced me to a little comedy called FRIDAY and a hilarious actor named Chris Tucker. His career began to soar and I truly though he was comedy’s next Eddie Murphy until suddenly he just seemed to vanish.

    Where are ya bro, there are laughs to be had.

    FRIDAY was the film that started opening doors for this young actor and I’m not surprised. Sure, his language was brazen and over the top but his razor sharp wit and charisma were hard to ignore. Others have tried to mimic the “Eddie Murphy” style of comedy like Chris Rock and Martin Lawrence for example. Lawrence was great in the BAD BOYS flicks and BLUE STREAK and Rock has had a couple hits as well (though I prefer his stand-up) but neither of them compare to Chris Tucker in my book. Now FRIDAY spawned a couple sequels, both of which Tucker’s character Smokey was absent, I wasn’t happy about this but I can understand how he wanted to move on to bigger and better things rather than bleed a good thing dry. With similar character roles in HOUSE PARTY 3 and DEAD PRESIDENTS it was time to broaden his horizons.

    FRIDAY 2 and 3 weren’t the same without the smoke dog.

    I was both happy and surprised to him show up in THE FIFTH ELEMENT alongside Bruce and Milla. I loved that film and his character Ruby Rhod was hilarious. Obviously I wasn’t the only one who thought so as the day I was hoping for came soon after when he got the lead in MONEY TALKS starring alongside Charlie Sheen. MONEY TALKS is still one of my favourite comedies, Tucker steals the show (easily) and again, despite his offensive language, the guy wins you over no matter how hard to try to deny him (I’m saying this as far as an objective on the fence fan goes). My girlfriend instantly became a fan after FIFTH ELEMENT, and nearly every guy I know loves him because of FRIDAY. The fan base was there and MONEY TALKS just pushed him forward. His career seemed to be booming and then along came RUSH HOUR.

    I still laugh my a** off when he does the whole “BZZZZZ” thing.

    To be fair, I’m not going to hate on RUSH HOUR. I loved that film as well. I was unsure about Jackie Chan as I’d avoided all his RUMBLE IN THE BRONX type films that started coming out of nowhere and multiplying rather quickly. That changed when I watched SHANGHAI NOON and saw that Chan could be funny. With this in mind I was open to the idea of him and Tucker teaming up for RUSH HOUR and was happy with the outcome. Though RUSH HOUR was rated AA, Tucker did have to tone down his antics a bit ala Eddie Murphy and it was here I started to get a little worried. Then came the sequel. RUSH HOUR 2 wasn’t all that bad, though again, they watered it down quite a bit from the first one. I was hoping Tucker would move on from this, but RUSH HOUR 3 came a calling and just ruined the entire series.

    You can’t go out like this, Chris. You just can’t.

    In the end, I can’t blame THE RUSH HOUR films per say, I would like to think it’s not because of the money, as I’m sure he made a substantial amount off that trilogy and with the past couple years of reinvented raunchy comedies I’m fairly confident it’s not a matter of his persona and language being in poor taste either. So I’m confused and in need of answers. If guys like Dane Cook can make mediocre comedy after comedy these days, I feel the time is right to see Chris Tucker re-immerge and reclaim a seat at the comedy round table. I have no idea what in hell happened to him and he’s got no movies in the pipeline that I know of (thank God there’s no talk of a fourth RUSH HOUR), so please find him and tell him that his fan base is still very much alive and waiting for a comeback.


  • He was almost the subject this week. I am sure I will get to him soon.


  • I think Chris Tucker’s problem in general is that after the first “Rush Hour” became a success (and really, the first blockbuster in his career), Tucker got extremely lazy and complacent. He overestimated his value by holding out on any sequels until got paid at least $20 million. The problem is that Chris Tucker was never really a box office draw unlike his “Rush Hour” co-star Jackie Chan.

    Because Chris Tucker literally only did “Rush Hour” movies from (1998-2007), he pretty much allowed himself to be typecast as a shrill, fast talking, loud-mouth persona. Then again, I’m willing to bet that if he wasn’t careful regardless, people would’ve inevitably grown tired of his shtick (as evidence in “The Fifth Element”).

    When Tucker was given a “second chance” (apparently, along the way, he has run into tax issues) to evolve when he reemerged in “Silver Linings Playbook”, he didn’t capitalize on it by pushing himself back into movies. It seems like Kevin Hart has “taken his spot” as the new “go to” black comedian in movies.


  • Episode 115 – Bad Boys II:

    In this week’s episode the gang visits the island nation of Cuba in the ridiculous, murder-happy sequel, Bad Boys II! How is Will Smith allowed to kill people no matter what? Why do they keep tailing villains using the flashiest of cars? And how long can Will Smith stare at a dead boob? Plus: Was Mr. Cunningham from Happy Days in the Klan?

    Bad Boys II stars Will Smith, Martin Lawrence, Gabrielle Union, Jordi Molla and Joe Pantoliano; directed by Michael Bay.


    • Bad Boys 3 happening, apparently without Michael Bay:

      Michael Bay won’t be directing the next Bad Boys film, starring Will Smith and Martin Lawrence. But Joe Carnahan might…

      It’s little secret that plans have been afoot for a third Bad Boys movie for some time, with the problem, as producer Jerry Bruckheimer told us back in summer 2013, being reuniting the key personnel. Back then, he was “trying to find a hole in Will Smith’s schedule”, and with regards director Michael Bay (who helmed the first two films), “trying to get on his docket”.

      With Michael Bay’s future seemingly tied into making endless Transformers movies right now though (as well as new sci-fi movie Time Salvager), it seemed that the chances of him finding time for Bad Boys 3 were slim. And so it’s proven, as a new director is apparently now in talks to make the film.

      Sony has turned to Narc, The A-Team and The Grey helmer Joe Carnahan, and he’s reportedly in talks to brush up David Guggenheim’s screenplay, and then potentially direct the film. It’s been 12 years and counting since Bad Boys II, and Sony is apparently suddenly moving quickly to try and get the next slot on Will Smith’s schedule.

      Martin Lawrence has already, more than once, indicated his willingness to return for a new film. We’re assuming, for Sony to get moving as it has done, that Will Smith is likely to be back as well. More on Bad Boys 3 as we hear it…


      • Action movies are just starting to recover from Michael Bay’s Bad influence

        Bad Boys (1995)

        Movie directors who broke through to the mainstream in the ’90s tended to do it one of two ways, either through independent film or music videos. The music-video route was probably the less respectable one, but plenty of genuine auteurs still came up through that farm system: Spike Jonze, Michel Gondry, David Fincher, Jonathan Glazer, the one-movie wonder Hype Williams. But music videos also produced plenty of big-screen hacks: McG, Brett Ratner, Gore Verbinski, Simon West, Marc Webb. The music-video world only produced one auteur hack, and that was Michael Bay.

        Before he became every movie dork’s favorite punching bag, Bay—a former Wesleyan frat boy with feathery hair and a strong jawline—was in the trenches, making videos and TV commercials. In the early ’90s, he was probably more famous for the commercials; the ubiquitous early-’90s “Got Milk?” ads were his. But it’s in his videos that you could really see his style taking shape. Consider his early masterpiece: the video for Meat Loaf’s majestic 1993 cheese-fest “I’d Do Anything For Love (But I Won’t Do That).” That video has a story, of sorts—something about Meat Loaf, in sympathetically deformed monster makeup, fleeing from police to woo a beautiful lady. But it’s not the story that you remember. It’s the individual images: helicopter blades cutting through the night, tongues chasing each other, a chandelier falling, a settee levitating, a mad-with-frustration Meat Loaf smashing all the mirrors in his ornate castle. It’s film as sensation, not as storytelling.

        Bay’s biggest influence, I’d argue, wasn’t Steven Spielberg or Tony Scott or Martin Brest. For my money, it was Russell Mulcahy, the crazy Australian who pretty much defined the whole early-MTV aesthetic. Mulcahy was probably the first big-time music-video director to make the leap into features; he did the first two Highlander movies and the Denzel Washington vehicle Ricochet before pretty much torpedoing his career with the big-budget bomb The Shadow. Like Mulcahy, Bay was big on smoke machines and moving shadows and quick cuts. He just blew all those ideas out even further and added something new: aggressively, noisily dumb comedy. And that’s the combination that gave us Bad Boys—Bay’s first movie and, in a weird way, a hugely important movie in the history of action cinema.

        Early on in Bad Boys, a crew of elite international mobsters breaks into a police station to steal a few hundred million dollars’ worth of confiscated heroin. They kill one of their own before the robbery even starts, supposedly to serve as some kind of diversion, and their whole break-in plan involves carts that slide through underground pipes at crazy speeds. Think about the way a director like Michael Mann would’ve filmed that robbery: with calm precision and icy tension, its violence fast and brutal, its grim-faced professionals intent on doing their jobs and getting out as fast as possible. Bay goes the opposite way, jerking his camera around and hacking things up in editing so that you’re not quite sure what’s going on, what these people’s plan is, why they needed to shoot that guy. The whole thing goes by in a hazy blur of action, and we’re not even entirely certain what happened until the good guys’ chief is grumpily explaining it the next day.

        Those two good guys, of course, are Will Smith and Martin Lawrence. Both were massive sitcom stars at the time, and neither one had been given the chance to carry a movie. To the extent that Bad Boys works at all today, it does so on the charm of those two. Lawrence has to do most of the comedic work, theatrically bugging out at every new ridiculous situation and delivering most of the big laugh lines. (As a very tall teenager, I spent the second half of the ’90s being told to sit my lengthy ass down.) Smith, meanwhile, was smooth and charismatic and stolid. He was always going to be a movie star, though the scene where he chases after the villains, gun clutched in his hand and shirt blowing open, probably helped him get there a whole lot faster.

        It matters that Smith and Lawrence are both black and that black actors, especially ones who hadn’t proven themselves as movie stars, did not often get to carry movies in the ’90s, even mid-budget ones like Bad Boys. In recent years, Bay has earned a reputation for throwing casual, buffoonish racist humor into his movies. And when he does something truly indefensible, like the minstrel-show robots in Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen, he always cites the way he fought for Smith and Lawrence to be cast in Bad Boys as evidence of his own character. And yeah, he deserves some credit for that. Producers Jerry Bruckheimer and Don Simpson had reportedly envisioned the film as a Dana Carvey/Jon Lovitz vehicle, which would’ve been really different. But that racism is there in Bad Bays, too, as in the scene where a freaked-out foreign liquor-store owner pulls a gun on Smith and Lawrence.

        And when you consider that Bad Boys came from a music-video director—and that one of its stars was one of the most charming figures of rap’s first late-’80s golden age—the soundtrack is a fucking mess. There is plenty of rap—including, for a few blessed seconds, Tupac—but most of it is frantic garbage. The movie’s most memorable music cue is probably KMFDM’s industrial banger “Juke Joint Jezebel,” playing during a nightclub scene. Bay would fix that problem by the time he got around to making 2003’s Bad Boys II, a bad movie with an all-time great pop-rap soundtrack.

        Bay was probably a little too aware he had a couple of sitcom stars on his hands when he was making the movie. Plotwise, Bad Boys plays out like a way-too-long sitcom episode with action scenes stapled on. An excruciatingly long stretch of the movie is a bullshit mistaken-identity subplot, with Lawrence’s family man attempting to fool fellow sitcom star Téa Leoni’s freaked-out witness into thinking that he’s really Smith’s slick playboy. (In an endearingly nonsensical touch, we learn that Smith’s Mike Lowrey—much like Sylvester Stallone’s Tango in the tonally similar Tango & Cash—is a rich guy who only works as a cop, because that’s what he always wanted to do.) Bay barely bothers to work up a reasonable explanation why Lawrence would be lying to both Leoni and his wife, but Lawrence commits to it completely. This is the sort of movie where the characters ask each other if they farted immediately before discovering a dead body, or where their chief smokes a cigar while shooting baskets, which is something that nobody has ever done in the history of humanity.

        Bay reportedly hated the script, so he let Smith and Lawrence ad lib their way through it. That worked just fine for both of them, since they rode that movie to a whole lot more screen success. (Smith did that more than Lawrence, obviously, but Lawrence was still headlining movies for years afterward.) But that frantic style helped make the movie’s plot incomprehensible. Action set pieces that could’ve been intense and hard-hitting in another director’s hands, like Lawrence’s big fight in a nightclub bathroom or the final airport shoot-out, become vague smears of motion.

        That vagueness, sadly, would become Bay’s great legacy. Soon after Bad Boys, just about every American studio action movie would have chaotic, indistinct fight scenes, and directors would yada-yada the scenes that should’ve been the real selling points. The Paul Greengrass Bourne movies get all the credit and blame for introducing the hectic, choppy shaky-cam style. But that style really got its start with Bay and Bad Boys. That movie introduced a two-decade epidemic of shitty and hard-to-follow action scenes, and we’re only just recovering from it now. That, more than the insulting comic relief or the “America, fuck yeah” jingoism, is Bay’s greatest cinematic sin. May he rot in hell for it.


  • Chris Tucker is an interesting case. He was quite prolific for a handful of years (between 1995 and 1998 he made 7 films), then he went almost completely silent, since the first Rush Hour he’s only made 3 films in the last 16 years, and two were Rush Hour sequels. I know he got paid 20 Million to do Rush Hour 2, did he just decide to essentially retire with that money?


  • Martin Lawrence vs. Jamie Foxx?

    I happen to be VERY familiar with BOTH actors, having seen 85% of their work. Both have the envious talent of being able to pick highly likable and satisfying projects. Both are extremely funny and talented. Here are the differences. Jamie Foxx shines on the silver screen where Martin Lawrence is more a natural for television. Jamie Foxx is a movie star. Martin Lawrence can only be a great television star. He comes across much more natural and relaxed on the boob tube while appearing stiff and scripted on the wide screen. So in essence, Jamie Foxx is too big for the small screen and Martin Lawrence is too small for the big screen.


  • Kelsey Grammer & Martin Lawrence’s FX sitcom gets an August premiere date:

    They’ll play lawyers in “Partners,” which will air like “Louie” — two episodes a week for five weeks, starting Aug. 4.


  • Wild Hogs assured viewers that men were born to be mild:

    According to pop-culture conventional wisdom, the heterosexual male was once a proud creature that ran free across our fair land, like a mighty man-buffalo slathered in Old Spice. He was a veteran of one of the good wars, ideally World War II or at least Korea, and those experiences haunted him in ways he was too manly and stoic to ever reveal, to himself or anyone else. He wore a suit, tie, and cufflinks when he went to an office with a buxom secretary. He went golfing, told dirty jokes, and joined his buddies for thick, juicy steaks and martinis, or maybe some scotch. He pinched waitress’ asses and leered at strangers’ cleavage without fear of shame or consequences. He raised a family and died of a heart attack in his mid-60s. He hid his fear and vulnerability from the world, like his fathers before him.

    By the time the surprise hit Wild Hogs—the United States’ 13th top-grossing film of 2007—rolled around, the once-mighty heterosexual American male had become a sad, constrained, emasculated beast, the equivalent of a once-fearsome and majestic brown bear reduced to wearing clown clothes and riding a tricycle in a low-rent circus. The film surveys four different breeds of American men in crisis.

    Bobby (Martin Lawrence, who long ago lost his spark and now trudges through vehicles dead-eyed and devoid of life or hope), is mocked by his high-powered wife Karen (Tichina Arnold) for his aspiration of becoming a professional author, while his mother-in-law responds with a derisive, “It’s hard for kids to respect a man who don’t do none of the providing.” Bobby at least has the consolation that his mean, controlling wife, fearing that her no-good husband will be even more of a drain on his family than he already is, got him back his old job with “the firm.” But this brief promise of dignity dissipates with the revelation that “the firm” Karen speaks of is not, say, a law firm, but rather a plumbing company where Bobby spends his days elbow-deep in human waste. The revelation of the true nature of “the firm” is more dispiriting than comic; the entire first act of Wild Hogs is defined by wild oscillations between sitcom shenanigans and sour suburban sadness. The film laughs at its characters, tearing them down so it can build them back up.

    Doug (Tim Allen) is the bread-winner of his home, but as a successful dentist, he, too, is emasculated by a world that constantly reminds him that he isn’t a physician or a surgeon, and is consequently a pathetic half-man. Doug’s son doesn’t want to play catch with him because he doesn’t think his dad is a good enough athlete, and his family expects him to stick to his diet when his birthright as an American man is eat undercooked steaks for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, washed down by scotch and an entire chocolate cake. Sure enough, a deviation from his diet sends Doug to the hospital, where his supportive wife Kelly (Jill Hennessy) tells him he needs to loosen up and embark on a City Slickers-like quest to find his smile. (This is not to be confused with a City Slickers II-like quest to find Curly’s gold.)

    Elsewhere, Woody Stevens (John Travolta) pretends to have it all together, but his supermodel wife is divorcing him, and he’s so broke, he angrily argues with a small child over the price of mowing his lawn. Woody pretends to have leverage in the battlefield we call earth, but he’s really nothing but a puny, rat-brained man-animal. Finally, Dudley (William H. Macy) can only dream of having a woman to divorce him, emasculate him, or gently encourage him to get his groove back. At a coffee shop, Dudley tries to impress an attractive woman by uttering “alternative specs” into his super-advanced voice-activated computer, only to have the computer misread his instruction as “alternative sex,” a search that leads quickly and inevitably to the geriatric-sex site Despite being a computer programmer by trade, Dudley owns one of those curious machines, found only in lowbrow comedies, that refuse to shut down once sexually inappropriate material appears on them.

    These four men are so beaten down by a world that expects them to worry about their cholesterol and interact with women that not even strapping on leather jackets with “Wild Hogs” emblazoned on the back and riding motorcycles wins them any respect. In their Ohio hometown, the men are laughed at as motorcycle-riding wusses. So they embark on a plan to reclaim their lost manliness.

    Like Phil Pitzer in Easy Rider: The Ride Back, they head out on the open road with no cell phones, no rules, no nagging wives, and only a vague plan to drive to the West Coast looking for adventure and whatever comes their way. Along the way, the Wild Hogs tangle with biker gang The Del Fuegos, led by Jack Blade (Ray Liotta), and come to the aid of the small town of Madrid, New Mexico. (The diner built for the film was left intact after filming was completed, and is now a gift shop selling Wild Hogs and Del Fuegos souvenirs. So if you’re planning a worldwide quest to visit the most depressing tourist traps in the world, this should be on your list, followed by the Three Amigos-themed cantina in Cozumel, Mexico.)

    Of the four leads, only Macy delivers a real performance, rather than mugging or coasting lazily on his persona, as his co-stars all do. He’s the funniest element of the film because he plays the role dramatically, as a strangely delightful man who lives in a different, more wonderful world than everyone else. Macy’s Dudley is also, not coincidentally, the only Hog who seems comfortable in his own skin. He’s the only character who isn’t a poser, who isn’t constantly pumped up with faux bravado or macho delusions. He’s also the only character comfortable enough in his masculinity to do things that might be considered feminine without immediately, angrily proclaiming his fierce heterosexuality.

    For example, after crashing his bike early in the film, Dudley rides on the back of Woody’s hog, and Dudley sneaks a long, intense sniff of Woody’s manly musk. Woody is, of course, apoplectic. “If you ever put your head on my shoulder, I’ll throw you into traffic,” he angrily informs Dudley. But when Bobby asks him whether he girlishly smelled his friend’s neck, Dudley rhapsodizes without shame about how much he loves his friend’s cologne, like a teenaged girl in the first blush of puppy love. Later, at a swimming hole, Dudley dives in bare-a** naked because he views the human body as a beautiful gift from God, and not something gross and gay, as Travolta’s character does. His friends follow suit, but Woody only disrobes with the caveat, “I will get naked with my gay friends, and if any of them look at my junk, I will kill them.”

    Wild Hogs is as obsessed with the prospect of gay orgies and man-on-man rape as a PG-13 family film released by a subsidiary of Disney can be. When the four Hogs are forced by the circumstances and stupidity of the script to sleep out at night on a single filthy mattress in a field, a police officer played by the great John C. McGinley overhears them moaning things like, “Boy, my ass is sore,” “It’s Woody’s fault for riding us so hard yesterday. The human body isn’t meant to straddle something for that long,” and, “Anybody want to explain to me why I’m in the dirt, when I got sore jaws from three hours of blowing?” Such statements would seem to imply that these four awkward, middle-aged gentlemen are referencing a vigorous, sodomy-filled orgy during which they violated each other’s orifices and spirits with reckless abandon. McGinley’s dirty mind leaps to places not generally seen outside the San Francisco bathhouses of the 1970s, and he wants in. Instead of arresting these men for having public sex, he lustily demands to be part of what he imagines to be the men’s traveling outdoor orgy.

    Watching Wild Hogs, I got the sense that within this neutered family film there was an unspeakably awful, unconscionably offensive hard-R comedy waiting to break out. The entire production is charged with an intense anxiety about sexuality and masculinity that spills out in weird and discomforting ways, like a state-fair scene where a singer played by Kyle Gass performs songs like Pussycat Dolls’ “Don’t Cha” in a sexually suggestive, gender-bending manner. And when violence seems imminent at a biker bar where the Hogs make enemies of the fearsome Del Fuegos, Doug quips, “Does anybody else have that pre-rape feeling?” to which Jack Blade’s sidekick Red (Kevin Durand) responds eagerly, “I do.”

    Later on, Jack Blade admiringly says of the Hogs, “Those assholes got balls,” to which Red eagerly adds, “That I’m gonna put in my mouth and chew on,” causing an unamused Jack to punch him in the face. Woody merely talks repeatedly about the violence he’ll commit if confronted with men trying to hit on him or steal a glimpse at his magnificent penis. Jack straight-up punches people when he imagines they might want to nibble on the testicles of other men. And of course, this film about the threatened masculinity of four middle-aged men on holiday from the domesticating influence of women-folk makes sure to reference Deliverance and show all the pasty male asses a film can get away with and still qualify as PG-13.

    In between all the gay-panic jokes, friendships are strengthened, confidence is rebuilt, and masculinity is restored. After standing up to the bikers, Bobby gets the courage to stand up to his wife and politely request he be treated like a human being. Doug realizes that in the end, it’s the biker gang who are the real posers, and the Wild Hogs who are truly free. Doug comes to realize that his giant house, gorgeous wife, and thriving professional practice aren’t a prison of domesticity, they’re things that allow him the freedom to, say, go on an extended motorcycle ride with his friends.

    That, I think, is the tacky, superficial, crowd-pleasing allure of Wild Hogs. It assured viewers that even though they might engage in the great American pastime of fantasizing about escape and the open road, their middle-to-upper-middle-class lives are actually infinitely more fulfilling. Wild Hogs reaffirms the supremacy of its audience’s way of life by making the open road seem like more trouble than it’s worth. Instead of a gauntlet of youthful, transgressive pleasures, the open road offers these unhappy men bikers who want to beat them up and cops who want to fuck them. If Wild Hogs makes life as a henpecked suburban male seem small and sad, it makes being an overgrown baby of a biker-gang cliché seem even smaller and sadder.

    Still, within this stupid, phony, pandering movie there are scattered moments that hint at what might have been. More than once, Doug references his half-forgotten history as a guy who “used to get high a lot,” with a faraway look of abashed pride. These days, Tim Allen is better known for being on a hit family show for a million years than he is for being a convicted cocaine dealer, but every once in a while, a glimpse of that long-ago life Allen once led will slip into his work, and for a fleeting moment, threaten to make him interesting. That’s the case here. The painful yet tender way Allen utters the phrase “used to get high a lot” hints at a deeper, truer movie about a guy who traded in the seedy pleasures of partying for a cozier life, but still sometimes feels that hunger in ways that are difficult for him to understand or explain.

    Wild Hogs isn’t that movie. It steers clear of anything resembling a harsh or complicated truth, and can only acknowledge that a character used to get high a lot if it doesn’t go into any further detail. Wild Hogs made a lot of money reassuring the men of America that even though they’re no longer free to harass secretaries with impunity, or drive giant, gas-guzzling cars with enormous fins, they’re still kings of the road and gods among men. Wild Hogs’ inability to believe its own message helps explain why it has failed to endure. The film was slated to have a sequel, but the disastrous critical and commercial performance of Old Dogs, which reunited Travolta with Wild Hogs director Walt Becker, doomed the planned follow-up.

    Wild Hogs fans (or “Hoggalos,” as I’ve just decided they’re now known) needn’t despair, however. If history is any indication, this movie, which climaxes with an astonishingly clumsy, awkward appearance by Peter Fonda as Jack Blade’s disapproving biker-legend dad, will receive its follow-up several decades down the line, courtesy of Easy Rider: The Ride Back guru Phil Pitzer, who will be cryogenically frozen, then unthawed so he can produce, write, and star as the never-seen brother of Fonda’s character, and as Jack’s even cooler, even more bada** uncle.


  • Martin Lawrence: “It’s not as easy to get on TV” nowadays:

    The star of FX’s “Partners” with Kelsey Grammer says the demands of TV are greater now than when he was on “Martin.” “Just to get ratings,” he says, “it’s very hard. The paychecks are not the same anymore.”


  • FX’s “Partners” looks unlikely to get a 90-episode order after hitting a new low:

    The Kelsey Grammer/Martin Lawrence sitcom needs to do impressively in the ratings in its first 10 episodes in order to get an additional 90-episode order.


  • Is Martin Lawrence the new Richard Pryor?

    Written by Jason Benn on 30 April 2010. Posted in News

    With the sad passing of Richard Pryor, not many actors and comedians were able to match the success of his comedic legacy. However, with his unique style of comedy and popularity, Martin Lawrence is picking up where Pryor left off.

    Martin Lawrence brought us into the new millennium as he took over the 90’s with his hit T.V. show, Martin. Reflecting the rising popularity of the Fox network throughout the 90s, Martin was one of the network’s highest rated shows during the sitcom’s five-season run.

    According to ratings, Martin still holds third place for the best T.V. show of all time in the U.S. Ahead of it are The Cobsy Show and The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.

    After Martin ended its memorable run, Lawrence found ample work in comedy films. He often starred as the second lead opposite actors such as Eddie Murphy, Will Smith, and Tim Robbins. Many of his films were blockbusters at the box office, including Boomerang (1992), Bad Boys (1995), Blue Streak (1999), Big Momma’s House (2000) and Bad Boys 2 (2003).

    Regrettably, he also had his share of box office failures including Black Knight (2001) and National Security (2002).

    Regardless of these flops, his salary steadily increased to over $10 million per film role. Lawrence continues to act in films such as Big Momma’s House 2. The movie opened at #1 in the box office and grossed almost $28 million in its opening weekend. In Wild Hogs (2007), Lawrence played a bored suburbanite seeking adventure on the open road in a biker comedy alongside John Travolta, Tim Allen and William H. Macy.

    Not too long ago, Lawrence starred in a film called Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins, which features an all star cast including, Martin Lawrence, Michael Clarke Duncan, Mike Epps, Mo’Nique, Cedric the Entertainer and James Earl Jones. Lawrence’s most recent film is Death at a Funeral, where he co-stars with Chris Rock.

    As the years go by, Lawrence will still find a way to leave his audience laughing.


  • Oh Please- Stop with all this BS! It’s Sooo totally clear that the Global Elite decided to take him down! And they’ll twist and destroy till he’s 6 feet under, so they can at least get some money out of him since MARTIN LAWRENCE, KATT WILLIAMS AAAAND DAVE CHAPELLE REFUSED to sign their ‘gazillion Contract’!- All of them labeled as crazy, insane, mental illness?!,?!?! are YOU FUCKING SERIOUS? It’s an obvious pattern! but y’all keep assuming and be the puppet ppl who believs anything media tells.


  • Gute might thank you for the fact that he’s being talked about here, and it’s free!


  • Derailed Film Stars: Martin Lawrence Gone Wrong:

    There was a time when Martin Lawrence stood alone amongst the generation of African-American stand-up comedians that followed in the footsteps of Eddie Murphy. He parlayed his hit sitcom, Martin, into a thriving film career around the turn of the century. That was a while ago, though, and Lawrence’s more recent work hasn’t enjoyed the same success. He attempted a return to TV last year, teaming with Kelsey Grammar on the FX show Partners, which lasted only 10 episodes. With the funnyman turning 50 this spring, we remember the days when Lawrence was “so crazy.”

    Roscoe Jenkins Returns Home

    Lawrence plays Dr. R.J. Stevens, a successful talk show host, who returns home to his small Southern hometown for his parents’ 50th wedding anniversary. The only issue is that his real name is Roscoe Jenkins Jr. and he’s avoided his childhood home since his painfully awkward youth. As is the way in such movies, as Roscoe returns home to flaunt his success, it turns out that everyone still views him as the same kid that they knew when he was growing up. Malcolm D. Lee’s film tries to straddle the line between slapstick and warm family humor and only partially succeeds. Putting Lawrence in the ring with James Earl Jones as his disapproving father is an unfair match-up. Better is when Lawrence gets to share the screen with fellow stand-ups Mike Epps and Cedric the Entertainer as his cousins.

    Blue Streak

    Going back to his early days as Kid ‘n Play’s tag-along pal Bilal in the House Party movies, Lawrence has long looked more comfortable bouncing off others. In the hit comedy, Lawrence stars as a jewel thief who was double-crossed by his partner and ends up in prison. When he gets out, he ends up posing as a detective to try to retrieve the jewel that he hid in a building that had been under construction during his heist — a new police headquarters. Partnered with a naïve detective played by Luke Wilson, he tries to play the ruse long enough to collect his booty. Lawrence gets to unleash the energy that made his sitcom a hit and his stand-up act such a draw while also having fun with Wilson and Dave Chappelle. The story is thin but, let’s face it, the plot was besides the point. The idea was clearly just to wind-up Lawrence and let him go.

    Bad Boys 2

    The biggest success of Lawrence’s film career has come in the Bad Boys buddy comedies playing Will Smith’s partner for producer Jerry Bruckheimer and director Michael Bay. The sequel to the 1995 original, Bad Boys 2 grossed more than $273 million worldwide. The plot has something to do with high-potency ecstasy hitting the streets in Miami thanks to the Russian mob, and Gabrielle Union serving as a foil/damsel-in-distress for Lawrence and Smith. Like most Bay films, though, any sort of story is just meant to get the audience from one explosion (followed by a wisecrack) to the next. In August, Lawrence told Conan O’Brien that plans are in place for Bad Boys 3, hopefully with Smith and Bay back as well. It’s been 12 years since the last movie, but as Hollywood has proven over and over again, wisecracks and explosions never get old.

    Black Knight

    Lawrence’s foray into family entertainment (hey, if Ice Cube can do it, then why not?), director Gil Junger’s movie is a half-hearted take on Mark Twain’s A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court. Lawrence plays a worker at a theme park called “Medieval World” who falls into a moat and finds himself back in merry, old England during the days of knights and jousts. The locals assume that he’s a French Moor in a New York Jets jersey — why wouldn’t they? — and soon Lawrence is leading them in an uprising against a ruthless king. The comedian’s character saves the day and brings the lessons that he learns back to his present day life. Lawrence is accessible enough that he should be fine doing lighter fare, but just because something is aimed at families, it doesn’t mean it has to be dumbed down — something that the team behind Black Knight didn’t seem to realize.

    Big Momma In the House

    Serving as a less nuanced precursor to Tyler Perry’s Madea character in a movie helmed by Scooby-Doo director Raja Gosnell, Big Momma’s House, by all rights, shouldn’t work. Martin donned a bodysuit reminiscent of Murphy in The Nutty Professor to play an FBI agent who poses as a grandma to help protect a witness. During his TV show, Lawrence toyed with playing multiple characters by donning make-up to change his appearance and in Big Momma, Lawrence was clearly having fun reviving that part of his act. The supporting performances by Paul Giamatti, Terrence Howard and Nia Long manage to make the final product better than its source material (having a couple of Oscar-nominated actors along for the ride will do that). Lawrence might not have looked like a passable elderly woman, but audiences looking for realism really weren’t the target market for the movie.


  • We all know his Story- and his career! It is obvious; Global elite is slowly loosing their power, and now they tear down what’s in their way- that simple!


  • You hear it all the time, ”we can never change the world or take down the powers that be, so don’t bother trying.” This was always something I greatly disagreed with due to the fact that I always understood that our repetition of cycles in life only continued to support the elite and is what powers them. The very consciousness and intentions that is sent into the ether when we utter those words or decide to live life blind from the cues to change our ways is what powers the elite. So how can we change this? We change our consciousness. Our thoughts, intentions and awareness around any given situation. As much as people do not want to see this sometimes, the ultimate play of the elite is a war on consciousness. They are not as concerned about power, money, energy etc. as much as they are concerned with suppressing our consciousness.

    That being said, humanities consciousness is shifting -this is very clear if you look at the big picture. As a result, we are seeing very big changes in the way people see the world and importantly, the elites control is beginning to dissolve. We are seeing this in a number of ways. People are not buying into the lies any longer. They are discovering the lies of the past and how they helped shape a corrupt world. They are not supporting war and realizing terrorism is an illusion. They don’t blindly follow corrupt medical practices or health practices. They are taking their lives into their own hands and realizing their government does not have their best interests at heart. -Joe Martino

    Written by: Eric Blair, Activist Post, Guest

    Karma is coming for the elite in a big way. As the Powers That Be head toward a devastating defeat in their war plans for Syria, signs are emerging that their rule over humanity is rapidly diminishing.

    Over the last decade the global elite have been on a mad dash to consolidate power over the world. It’s always been their plan like some evil villain in a comic book, but after 9/11 the plan went into overdrive and then turbo charged during the financial crisis of 2008.

    Yet it’s doomed to fail because humans are meant to be guided by their own free will, not controlled like livestock. The more the elite try to control humanity, the more entropy occurs. Entropy, for those who don’t know, is the lack of order or predictability; a gradual decline into disorder.

    Although the elite still enjoy a huge wealth advantage over the masses, they are now resigned to behaving like tyrants to maintain control. This, in turn, exposes their dark side which has been cleverly concealed for ages. Not anymore. People are waking up in droves, at least as fast as the elite can build their full-spectrum prison matrix. Let them try. To paraphrase Victor Hugo, “No army can stop an idea whose time has come.”Here are ten signs that the elite are losing control over the people: 1. OFFICIAL LIES NO LONGER EFFECTIVE: The lies they tell simply don’t work anymore. There was a time when official lies, especially about war and peace, were believed. Because, after all, how evil would it be to lie about such things? Generally people want to believe they are being told the truth when life and death is at stake. The boy who cried wolf has cried one too many times. Even if they told the truth at this point, very few would believe them. 2. NO CONFIDENCE IN POLITICS; US politicians have a paltry approval rating. The trust in government is at all-time lows here and around the world. Mainstream polls show only 10% of the public has confidence in Congress. In other words, 90% don’t believe in them to be competent to govern.


    The most recent polls show that 77% of the population no longer trusts corporate TV news. Is it any wonder why the establishment media failed to sell the lies about the alleged Syria chemical event? With all their monopoly might over the airwaves, they can no longer claim that black is white simply because officialdom says so.

    Hungary recently became the first country to follow Iceland’s lead by shedding international bankers (IMF) and is considering pursuing prosecution of past prime ministers who enslaved the people with debt. Look for this trend to continue even if nations decide to default to break free.
    Vatican abruptly cleaning up its act:

    Under the previous Pope, Pope Benedict, scandals erupted from the Vatican ranging from covering up pedophile priests to money laundering and fraud. Benedict, in an unprecedented move, abruptly retired to make way for a seemingly much more likeable Pope Francis. Pope Francis by all measures is working furiously to reclaim the church’s peaceful and humble reputation. Whether this is genuine or a PR move, it’s telling that the church was forced into such a drastic turnaround to save itself from losing all credibility.


    Finally. Soldiers, who are outlawed from making political statements, are steadily speaking out against US military adventurism. As Einstein famously said “The pioneers of a warless world are the young men (and women) who refuse military service.”

    One of the darkest signs that the elite are losing their grip on power is the construction of the militarized police state specifically trained to combat domestic civil unrest. Local cops with tanks and other combat gear are working with Feds at Fusion centers, active Army units are on American soil for the first time in history, the NSA spy grid is being used by the IRS and DEA, and the elimination of due process for Americans under the NDAA are just some of the tyrannical moves made to secure the elite criminals from public backlash. They’re clearly scared, and they should be given what they’ve done to the American people and the Constitution.

    A state seceding from a larger political entity used to be an ultra-fringe concept, until now. In America, secession movements are winning over the public in parts of Colorado and California. In Europe, serious secession movements are happening in Spain and Scotland, as well as several EU nations flirting with the idea of dropping out the the euro. Decentralization = Entropy!

    Control the food and you control the people. True in theory, but much more difficult in practice. GMO leaders like Monsanto are being exposed. All of their economic and political strength cannot defeat the spread of knowledge about the dangers of pesticide-soaked Frankenfoods. GMO fields are being burned in protest in America and around the world, informed nations continue to reject their products, and labelling laws are gaining traction.


    Many reading this will think marijuana legalization is a superficial development. However, it is a major signpost that the elite’s grip is fading. Enormous resources have been spent to keep cannabis illegal. Cannabis has been a powerful medicine for physical, mental, and spiritual health throughout the ages. This single plant represents a huge threat to the power structures and their industries, hence its seemingly senseless illegality. The approaching global reversal of the tyrannical policy of prohibition is the first of many concessions to come.



  • Global elite….what?


  • Will Smith Says Bad Boys 3 Will Arrive In Next 12-16 Months:

    In an interview on Zane Lowe’s Beats 1 Radio show, Will Smith gave an update on Bad Boys 3. Sony previously set the release date for February 17, 2017. Bad Boys 4 will arrive on July 3, 2019. Both films star Smith and Martin Lawrence and were announced in August. NME reports that Joe Carnahan (The A-Team, The Grey) is rumored to co-write and direct Bad Boys 3. Jerry Bruckheimer previously said that he hopes to convince Michael Bay to contribute to the sequels in some way. Here are highlights:

    On Bad Boys 3: “There is a very, very, very strong possibility that you will be seeing a Bad Boys within the next 12 to 16 months.”


  • Who’s fault is it that “Martin” ended?

    Martin looked visibly high during the last season and in the movie A Thin Line Between Love and Hate.


  • Re: Actress Lark Voohies Slams Bill Cosby, Exposes Martin Lawrence

    This is from Dustin Diamond’s book “Behind the Bell”…

    When Lark Voorhies was engaged to Martin Lawrence, he abused her (at a minimum verbally).
    This might be the strangest (and most abstract) scandal that Diamond tries to expose. He basically suggests that Martin Lawrence did something to make Voorhies even more reclusive and non-communicative.

    He says that he saw Voorhies shortly after her fiance, Martin Lawrence (yes, the famous one) ended things with her, publicly, on the “Arsenio Hall” show. Diamond says “She flinched whenever a man was near her or a man’s voice was suddenly projected toward her. She rocked back and forth mumbling to herself in a very disturbing fashion, as if in her own world. You can draw your own conclusions from that.”


  • Martin Lawrence’s heat stroke makes the list of WatchMojo’s Top 10 Celebrity Brushes with Death


  • How Martin Lawrence Opting Out Of ‘New Jack City’ Made Chris Rock A Star


  • BLUE STREAK (1999)

    Miles Logan is a jewel thief. Things go awry while he’s stealing a huge diamond in downtown L.A.: a thief, Deacon, tries a double-cross, the police arrive, and Miles is arrested, but not before he hides the jewel in an air duct of a building under construction. Two years later, he’s out of prison and he heads for the site: it’s L.A.’s new police headquarters! Posing as a reassigned cop, Miles gets into the building, but before he can recover the swag, he’s partnered with a naive detective and sent out to investigate burglaries. With Deacon on his trail, he must recover the diamond, keep the cops fooled, and do a few good deeds as a detective who can think like a criminal.

    Before BIG MOMMA’S HOUSE and seeming I he typecast after that to a degree. Martin Lawrence was a hot popular comic, who had a pretty successful film career. This film while not his best was one of the films that was successful.

    I will admit to skipping it in theaters to me the only noteworthy aspect of the film was the Jay-Z song on the soundtrack. It was an exclusive single at the time. The whole dressing up as a bad toothed pizza delivery guy in the trailer reeked of bad situation comedy and had no interest.

    Then once it came out on DVD I was working at a video store and had a co-worker who loved to put on African-American cinema all the time which wouldn’t have been so bad if he had the sense to choose good movies of African American cinema and not the seemingly same 5 films, this was one in rotation. The other I remember being what’s the worst that could happen which I have seen more times he. Necessary probably even more then the people who made it. Black knight. In fact the only good film he ever python was Malcolm x. This film was one of the least films he put on and finally one day just to keep it outbid the store I rented it so that I could watch it completely with. Interruptions and have a few days of peace.

    What followed was a typical popcorn blockbuster that really offered up no real surprises and to tell the truth you don’t really expect any the film is pretty cut and dry. It’s funny and entertaining and to will forget it pretty soon after watching it. It’s no classic but a good time waster. It keeps the formula of mistaken identity and fish out of water combining them.

    The film stocks with the comedy. It flirts with a romantic story line though is quickly abandoned for more of a buddy comedy.

    One of the few things that fascinates me about this film ad it’s type is that the stars of the film are supposed to handle all the comedy and everyone else around is kind of the straight men, but usually the supporting characters are so over the top in the personeas hey seem cartoon-ish or comedic themselves. Throwing the film off a bit. Luckily the wackiness ensues when Dave chappelle shows up in a supporting role.

    Martin Lawrence is funny and for all his Foul mouthed at times humor. His most graceful aspect is his physical comedy. Even when telling jokes the energy, the faces and his movements all are in-synch to sell his humor ad make you marvel at his talent. I mean he has funny jokes too, but his true talent is in all the other skills he brings to the table.

    The film Was supposed to be a hard R rating until they found the film and material worked better as a pg- 13 film. Leaving it open to more all ages access for the audience. As most of the humor seems more inclined for a younger audience. So the plot, Dialogue and characters had to all be rewritten Screenwriter, John August was the last minute Script Doctor for the script

    The film introduces Nicole Ari Parker’s character as a strong rival for his character. Though she adds to the story. It almost seemed like a set-up for a kind of love interest. Though the film never seems to quote go there. As his character doesn’t have that much time for that. Nor would the ending make any sense if he still has her as baggage.

    This is the first Martin Lawrence showcase where he is the entertainment the real Lead. Even though he is partnered up with Luke Wilson. It seems more like Wilson is a co-star and not another name above the title who Martin Lawrence is the co-star or buddy of. Instead here Lawrence gets to be the one who the camera never leaves and who the story is based around instead of being just he comic relief or the supporting character that he had been relegated to in films such as HOUSE PARTY, HOUSE PARTY 2, BAD BOYS, NOTHING TO LOSE.

    He was kind of my first introduction to really following stand-up comedy and comedians. I remember him from HOUSE PARTY then hosting DEF COMEDY JAM. I got his albums and when his career blew up I followed him. I remember classic comedians before him line Eddie Murphy, Rodney Dangerfield, Billy Crystal, George Carlin, Redd Foxx, Richard Pryor, Sam Kinison, Andrew Dice Clay but he was he first I could relate to a point and groin watching him and other comedians on DEF COMEDY JAM, I started to pay attention to stand-up even broadening my admiration for more comics. They were rebellious (especially after NBC banned Lawrence for his routine on Saturday night live) Comics have been like rock stars to me ever since i mean examine it. they have a talent that looks easy, but once you actually try it realize how hard is to master if you ever really do. Your style and skill is constantly in transition. You spend most of your time on the road in front of crowds. Though there are many in your field somehow your voice and brand manages to stand out and be noticed and admired. You have die hard fans and groupies. Everyone tries to do it, but only the strong survive as you pretty much are open and. Are your soul and ate at the mercy of the crowd.

    According to Dave Chappelle, a scene was written during filming in which his character was to wear a dress while disguised as a prostitute. Chappelle adamantly refused. The writers complained to the producers who then tried to convince Chappelle to do the scene but he still refused. According to Chappelle, he felt that it was part of a disturbing trend in which African-American men wear dresses in films.

    There were plans to do a sequel which never materialized.

    It’s a worthy rental

    Grade: C+


  • Derailed Film Stars: Is Martin Lawrence More Than a Big Momma or Bad Boy?

    At one point, Martin Lawrence was seen as the heir apparent to Eddie Murphy, and for a period of time the comedian lived up to those lofty expectations by finding success on both the small and big screen. Lawrence could not sustain his pace, but has popped up just enough to remind everyone over that he’s still around. The comedian has been back in the spotlight with the announcement that he will be joining Will Smith for not one but two sequels to their hit, Bad Boys. While these new movies will be an easy payday, it’s been a long time since Lawrence has tried to stretch himself, the way that his peer Chris Rock has tried occasionally to do in recent years. While we wait for Lawrence to return to familiar ground, we take a look back at what made him one of Hollywood’s craziest comedians.

    Oh Happy Day

    Lawrence was at the the height of his popularity when he agreed to be in 2000 comedy Big Momma’s House. The comedian played an FBI agent who donned a fat suit to pose as Big Momma in an effort to protect Nia Long from bad guy Terrence Howard. Despite being despised by critics, the movie kept Lawrence’s winning streak going and he returned to the character for a pair of sequels. Amazingly, besides future Oscar nominee Howard, the film features future Oscar winners Paul Giamatti and Octavia Spencer in supporting roles.

    The Black Knight’s Tale

    Gil Junger’s loose retelling of Mark Twain’s A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court, 2001’s Black Knight, helped prove that the star wasn’t infallible. As an employee in a Medieval-themed amusement park, Lawrence gets knocked on the head and ends up back in the days of knights and kings. While he uses some modern sass to get himself through every sticky situation, the movie never really found an audience. With a budget of around $50 million, it did not even come close to recouping that figure.

    Life With Eddie

    Life most of his contemporaries, Lawrence built his career along the path that Murphy had blazed. The pair had already worked together in 1992’s Boomerang when they signed on as costars for 1999’s Life. The stars played a couple of con men framed for murder in 1930s Mississippi, who then spend the rest of their lives trying to escape from prison. Unfortunately, the movie wasn’t quite funny enough for fans that wanted to see the wacky side of the comedians, and couldn’t quite live up to the more dramatic elements either. What it did feature, however, was an eclectic group of supporting players including Ned Beatty, Rick James and Bernie Mac.

    Blue Streak Groove Step

    While Lawrence’s other 1999 movie didn’t have quite the expectations of his pairing with Murphy, it turned out to be one of the biggest hits of the actor’s career. In Les Mayfield’s buddy comedy Blue Streak, Lawrence is a thief who poses as a police investigator to try to recoup a lost score. Instead, he ends up helping Luke Wilson stop a drug smuggling ring. In addition to the stars, Dave Chappelle shines in a supporting role as another thief roped into helping out. Playing off of Wilson as a straight man, Lawrence’s rapid-fire patter has rarely been better served.

    Wild Hog Mind Reader

    What does Lawrence have in common with Tim Allen, William H. Macy, and John Travolta? Prior to 2007’s Wild Hogs the answer would have been nothing. The disparate group play suburban dads who like to get out their Harleys on the weekends. They end up running afoul of a gang led by the always scary Ray Liotta, and have to find their true biker selves to get themselves out of a jam. Despite the goofy premise and a bashing from critics, the film became a surprise hit, grossing more than $200 million worldwide.


  • I can’t believe no one had said, “Martin Lawrence” he was at the level of game that Kevin Hart is right now and was arguably on his way to Eddie Murphy level status as a massively successful black comedian who had crossover appeal in movies and TV….and then he decided to get buck naked and lose his s*** in the middle of an intersection while having a nervous breakdown / psychotic episode.

    He was a pariah after that and never recovered his career.


  • 15 Actors In Desperate Need Of A Box Office Hit


    Martin Lawrence used to be a reliable box office draw. Coming off his hit FOX show, Martin, he starred in a string of modest box office hits, such as Blue Streak, Bad Boys, and Big Momma’s House, the last of which was a bona fide comedy blockbuster in 2000, racking up $117 million in domestic box office receipts.

    However, the law of diminishing returns doomed Big Momma’s House 2 and 3 to relative underperformance, and many of his later films failed to break out, keeping Lawrence just out of reach of the A-List. His last box office hit, Wild Hogs, dropped in 2007, and he had help from an all-star cast which included William H. Macy, John Travolta, and Tim Allen.

    Since then, Martin starred in a handful of moderately-performing films and tried his hand at another sitcom, the ill-advised Partners, co-starring Kelsey Grammer, which was cancelled after ten episodes. At this point, it’s quite clear that Martin Lawrence needs Bad Boys 3 a lot more than Will Smith does.


  • BLIND GOSSIP 01/04 #2

    This actress was on a popular TV series in the 1980s and 90s. We are waiting for her to raise her hand and tell her own story about powerful men who use their power to abuse young girls in the industry. When she was at her peak, there was a famous TV and film actor who was abusive to her, and his actions caused her considerable distress. We’re told that those events contributed to her severe emotional distress and her career downfall. She hasn’t had a steady job in at least ten years, and she sometimes behaves oddly in public. We’re not sure if she saved any evidence from that time, but it would certainly go a long way to making her case. A former cast mate of hers could tell what he knows, but there’s a problem. Like the actress, he is now seen as unstable and unreliable. It’s a shame, too, because they both have a lot of very compelling stories to tell about our actress as well as other young girls in the industry who have been abused by powerful men.
    Actress: Lark Voorhies
    TV Show: “Saved By the Bell”
    Abusive actor: Martin Lawrence
    Her Former Cast Mate: Dustin Diamond


  • Why Bad Boys 3 was delayed and how it’s doing sequels right


  • Martin Lawrence Has Nothing to Prove

    Ask Martin Lawrence if he feels like he had something to prove with the release of his newest special and he’ll shut down the notion faster than Sheneneh can say, “Hold up!” In his words, “I didn’t feel like I had anything to prove. I’ve done it all.” And he’s kind of right. With 30 years in standup comedy, lead roles in box-office smash films, and a hit television series, Martin has accomplished what many only dream about. But a desire to give the people what they want prompted him to set out on a nationwide tour that would lead to the filming of his third comedy special, Doin’ Time. The special premiered in September on Showtime and is now available on digital and DVD. Doin’ Time is a raw, rowdy whirlwind of energy and physicality, an impressive feat for the 51-year-old comedian. Martin’s work ethic is on full display and if there was any question about whether or not he’s dedicated to his business, he kept our appointment to chat despite the tragic passing of his friend and Martin co-star Tommy Ford the day before. We discussed what Doin’ Time means to him, his advice for newer comics, and the possibility of Bad Boys 3.


  • Bad Boys 3 has been delayed, and Bad Boys 4 has been taken off the schedules altogether


  • “Martin” Ended With A Pathetic Whimper 20 Years Ago This Month

    Season 4 seemed to be the beginning of the “end” of Martin. There were stories about Martin Lawrence and his problems with drugs and having a nervous breakdown in the middle of Ventura Blvd in the Valley were all over the press. There were scenes during season 4 where he seemed high and/or totally out of it. Then the story about Tisha Campbell and the lawsuit just added fuel to the fire, making things worse. It was a miracle that they even had a 5th season to be honest.


  • “Martin” Turns 25: Martin Lawrence Reflects on his “Legendary” Sitcom

    “Martin” Turns 25: Martin Lawrence Reflects on his “Legendary” Sitcom
    by Derek Lawrence

    There’s something special about having a show named after you. You’re not just in the show — you are the show. In 1992, during a much-less diverse era of television than the present, Martin Lawrence joined fellow comedians Roseanne Barr and Jerry Seinfeld in earning the distinct honor.

    “It was the biggest thing in the world for me,” Lawrence tells EW of scoring “Martin”. “I couldn’t believe it.”

    Now, 25 years after the memorable sitcom premiered, the comedian is reflecting on the series that launched him from stand-up comedian on the rise to headliner of blockbusters like Bad Boys and Big Momma’s House.

    “When I started stand-up, I always wanted to get into acting,” he shares. “And Richard Pryor was someone I idolized in a sense of wanting to follow in his footsteps, so that’s what I did.”

    After small supporting roles in Do the Right Thing and House Party, Lawrence landed his biggest opportunity yet: co-creating and starring in his own series for Fox, a young network that was trying to compete with the likes of the established powers at ABC, CBS, and NBC.

    “Martin” was built as such a showcase for the rising star that not only would Lawrence be playing the lead role, but he would be bringing to life his own cast of hilariously outrageous recurring characters based on family members and people from his youth.

    When he wasn’t portraying radio disc jockey Martin Payne, the actor was donning braids as the feisty Sheneneh or sporting a black belt around his waist as Dragonfly Jones, a martial arts expert who couldn’t seem to ever win a fight.

    Thanks to Lawrence’s crowd-pleasing array of characters, the relatable relationship between Martin and Gina (Tisha Campbell-Martin), and the never-ending string of insults hurled back and forth by Martin and Pam (Tichina Arnold), “Martin” became a hit and an important cog in Fox’s attempts to rival NBC’s ‘Must See TV’ Thursdays.

    “You felt the energy, realness, and fun,” says Lawrence of why viewers responded so positively. “The audience didn’t just laugh, but it’s how they laughed. They weren’t only laughing, they were stomping and roaring. Just to feel all of that energy we were getting was beautiful.”

    The great feeling lasted for five seasons and 132 episodes, before the series wrapped in unfortunate fashion with Campbell-Martin sitting out almost the entirety of the final season due to a sexual harassment lawsuit she filed against Lawrence and his fellow producers. The actress returned for the series finale, but with the condition that the show’s star and co-creator couldn’t be present when she was on set.

    Despite that rocky ending, comedies such as “Roseanne” and “Will & Grace” are being revived and Lawrence himself believes his “legendary” series “would still hold its own” if it aired today.

    It’s easy to wonder if a possible comeback could in fact be in the cards for “Martin”, but the actor, who returned to TV for 2014’s short-lived FX comedy “Partners”, is definitively ruling it out.

    “No, I think we’ve done everything we had to do,” he admits. “We had a loss with Tommy Ford. And it wouldn’t be the same, so that would never happen.”


  • 10 Awesome-Sounding Sequels That Will Never Happen

    Bad Boys For Life

    Bad Boys II is the Michael Bay movie to end all Michael Bay movies. This was the project his entire career had been building up to; with $100m and 147 minutes to play with, Bayhem was well and truly unleashed in a non-stop assault on the senses packed with enough shootouts, punch-ups and car chases to fill three movies. Maybe even five.

    Quite a lot of people can’t stand Bad Boys II because of its blatant disregard for subtlety and relentless over-the-top carnage. Just as many people love it for the very same reasons.

    Although Michael Bay never showed much interest in returning to the franchise, Bad Boys III was never definitively taken off the table. Then, in June 2015, Joe Carnahan was hired to be write and direct the newly-christened Bad Boys For Life with a February 2017 release date announced soon after and action movie fans across the world rejoiced in super slow motion.

    Then the date was pushed back to June 2017. Then again to January 2018. Then to November 2018. Eventually, Carnahan quit the project. This month, Sony removed it from their release schedule entirely and co-star Martin Lawrence sounded skeptical that the movie would happen at all. The sad truth is that after nearly fifteen years, the Bad Boys will never ride together again.


  • Why you may never see Bad Boys 3

    Martin Lawrence is Martin Lawrence

    While Smith’s star has risen in the 20-plus years since Bad Boys hit theaters, the same can’t be said for his co-star Martin Lawrence. After a string of modest hits in the ’90s with films like Big Momma’s House, Life, and Blue Streak (not to mention a very public nervous breakdown), Lawrence has receded from the spotlight in recent years. One look at the funnyman’s IMDb credits over the past decade will lead you to a series of underperforming comedies, straight-to-video misfires, and TV flops. While there’s no doubting Lawrence’s talents as a comedian, one can’t help but wonder if his fading big-screen appeal isn’t hindering Bad Boys III’s chances.


  • Lark Voorhies – Somebody help her PLEASE!

    Poor thing. I think Martin Lawrence messed her up. He physically and mentally abused her and then broke off their engagement by announcing it on Arsenio Hall show that he was getting married to someone else. I think that’s an old photo though. She’s doing fan conventions.


  • The Real Reason You Don’t Hear from Martin Lawrence Anymore


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