The Mos Def-Attached Thelonious Monk Biopic Has Been Condemned By Monk’s Estate

In addition to the announced Dr. John documentary

Just 24 hours after it was announced that rapper Yasiin Bey (formerly known as Mos Def) will play late jazz legend Thelonious Monk in a new biopic film titled Thelonious, the artists’ estate came out with a statement “condemning” the film as unauthorized.

T.S. Monk, the musician’s son and the head of the organization that runs the Thelonious Monk property, told Pitchfork that the “project and its announcement are completely unauthorized!”

“I hate the script and I control the music in Thelonious’ catalog,” Monk mentioned. “There isn’t any involvement by anybody within the Monk household with this project, and we actually condemn the trouble.”

Only a day after the statement from the Monk estate, Yasiin Bey announced that he is pulling out from the project due to these objections.

At the same time, the estate of late R&B great Dr. John issued a statement denying their involvement in the upcoming Dan Auerbach-directed documentary about the late New Orleans legend.

“The Official Estate of Malcolm John Rebennack, Jr., p/k/a Dr. John, clarifies that the Estate has not authorized the recently announced documentary on the life of Dr. John purportedly to be produced by Impact Artist Productions (and Management) and Radical Media,” the estate said in a statement.

As Rolling Stone explains, when Auerbach revealed his as-yet-untitled film earlier this month, the Black Keys singer noted that Dr. John’s longtime managers, Ed Gerrard and Peter Himberger of Impact Artist Productions, would serve as producers on the film, perhaps suggesting that the documentary was made with the approval of the estate.

According to the estate, though, “Impact Artist Productions (and Management) does not manage or speak for the Estate, which has its own team with, as Mac would say, a gang and a half of legalizers.”

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