"You're coming to our culture. You're taking something we bled for," says Dizaster while raging against Corden's popular "Drop the Mic" sketch in an interview with TooFab.
James Corden's "Drop the Mic" segment and TBS series are prime examples of cultural appropriation, according to battle rapper and "Bodied" star Dizaster, who unloaded on the late-night host while visiting Studio TooFab to talk about his new Eminem-produced movie.
"James Corden is a cultural appropriator to the fullest," Dizaster, real name Bachir Yagami, told TooFab. "Like if there was a culture-appropriating emblem, it would be his f--king swollen little f--king porky pig face. That's what would be the emblem of culture appropriating. It's getting involved in battle rap and not even knowing what the f--king battlers are."
The 34-year-old, LA-based performer was cast in "Bodied" because of his notoriety as one of the best battle rappers in the sport. But before his first movie, he was hired as a consultant for the "Late Late Show" segment, but when Dizaster showed up to set, Corden didn't even know who he was.
"I had to introduce myself to him and he's just like, 'Okay,' And he walked away," he continued. "He just didn't even know anything about battle rap. He wanted to battle but didn't want to do no kind of, like didn't even care."
"They wanted us there to help them and give them 'authenticity,' but they f--king didn't know nothing," Dizaster complained. "I'm not going to sit over here and completely dump on him because I could all f--king day, but like that shit is a joke. We don't want anyone to think that is battle rap. ['Bodied'] is battle rap!"
Corden's publicists did not immediately respond to TooFab's request for comment on Wednesday, but we will update this article if they do. To see Dizaster tearing into Corden, skip ahead to the 4-minute mark in the video below.
"Bodied," directed by Joseph Kahn on just a $1 million budget, is a critically acclaimed comedy that follows a white liberal Berkley graduate student (Calum Worthy) studying he world of battle rap for his thesis paper. At the encouragement of his favorite rapper, he starts to compete at events in Oakland and Los Angeles, but soon discovers his words have consequences for his life as an academic. Dizaster stars as fictional rapper Megaton, and knocks a very intense performance out of the park without any previous acting experience.
The movie is packed with social commentary and touches on all sorts of racial taboos in our culture, including appropriation, so TooFab asked the battle rapper known for aggressive, rapid-fire rhymes how he would define cultural appropriation. "Culture appropriation is getting involved, first of all, in a culture based on the notoriety you'd get from it ... without doing the knowledge or caring anything about it," he said.
In the interview alongside "Bodied" producer Adi Shankar, Dizaster ripped "Drop the Mic" for not giving the professional battle rappers who work on the series any significant credit or exposure.
"That show, the way it is, it's not to help battlers. It's to keep them behind the scenes and pretty much use them for all of their abilities -- their coaching, all their shit -- and then put on the faces that they want to put on. This is culture appropriating."
And that's about when the fireworks really started. Dizaster ripped into the comedian's "little bitch ass" and his guests soaking up the glory on stage while the real battle rappers, hired by producers to coach, watch off camera.
"We're the ones that are f--king doing this. You're coming to our culture. You're taking something we bled for," Dizaster shouted. "You come from a f--king different place. You're not even from here. This is where hip hop is from. You come from a different place so you could do this shit, but you don't want to know none of this shit that we're doing? Nah, culture appropriating bullshit.
"I'll never respect people like that," he continued. "Straight the f--k up. They aren’t ready for my energy, bro. They're not ready for this shit ‘cause it's real. This is the shit that they don't want to be involved in. This is the shit people want to be involved in from far, make money off it, but not f--k with the real shit and what it really is."
When Shankar floated the idea of Dizaster squaring off against Corden on the mic, the battle rapper ensured he would "decimate" the comedian. And, uh, we believe him wholeheartedly. (And would totally watch that "Drop the Mic" episode!)
Dizaster stressed that "Drop the Mic" is "not f--king battle rap."
"Why do you think James Corden wants to be a part of this?" he asked. "Because we blew this up and he sees money in it and his little suit and tie see money in it. That's appropriation."
The recurring "Late Late Show" sketch was so popular, TBS picked up a "Drop the Mic" series. Method Man and Hailey Baldwin host 30-minute episodes featuring a variety of battles between celebrities swinging through to promote their latest project.
Shankar described "Drop the Mic" as "a kid friendly version" of battle rap. But if you want the real thing, Dizaster gave "Bodied" his stamp of approval, crediting Kahn and Shankar for portraying the sport "the right way."
So would Dizaster actually consider schooling Corden in real battle rap?
"If he really wants to show that he cares about the culture then he'll let me stand there and let me tell him what I want to tell him without filtering it through all these f--king suit and ties," he said. "Because that's what they do with their shit, they filter it through all these corporations. Some f--king lame [executive] behind the table decides what battle rap is. No. Let me say to you what the f--k I want to say to you and put it out."
Ball's in your court, Corden.
"Bodied" is in select theaters now and will premiere on YouTube Premium on Nov. 28. You can watch the entire discussion with Dizaster and Shankar about cultural appropriation in the video above.
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