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A Tribe Called Quest Blame Email for Documentary Beef

Vallery Jean, FilmMagic

The battle between A Tribe Called Quest and documentarian Michael Rapapaort is heating up. Q-Tip, who has previously denounced the doc ‘Beats, Rhymes and Life: The Travels of A Tribe Called Quest,’ elaborated on why he and the rest of his ATCQ members are unhappy with how the production side of the film has been handled.

Speaking with MTV News’ Sway Calloway, the group — Tip, Ali Shaheed Muhammad and Jarobi, who phoned into the conversation — explained how a producer accidentally emailed them a message that wasn’t intended for their eyes. The email revealed how producers conspired to get the group off the credits for the film after they disagreed with the final cut. “First off let’s close the Billing Block and put it on the poster so they can’t get on that. Then we’ll f— them on everything else,” said the message.

Q-Tip, who read the email aloud twice, said they received the errant note the same day that the trailer was released. “All of this stuff is going on and we’re still trying to move forward in good faith and we see this e-mail, inadvertently, which was a godsend. I believe that that was the universe giving that to us and showing us who we were dealing with,” he continued.

Tip first disapproved of the film in December 2010, tweeting about how Rapaport wouldn’t give the group any control over the final edit. The actor-turned-director later countered his claims, stating that he “got a bit nervous because he wants to be seen in a certain way.”

Rapaport recently cut a deal with Sony Pictures Classics to release the documentary later this year.

Watch A Tribe Called Quest’s ‘Award Tour’

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