M.I.A. Claims JAY-Z Pushed Her to Sign ‘Ridiculous’ Lawsuit Settlement With the NFL
M.I.A. is speaking out about her trials and tribulations following her controversial appearance at the 2012 Super Bowl halftime show. If recall, she briefly flashed the middle finger during her performance, which apparently angered NFL executives.
Afterward, M.I.A. found herself in a two-year legal battle against the NFL who sued her for $16 million before settling the case in 2014. This incident is further examined in her new documentary with filmmaker Stephen Loveridge called MATANGI / MAYA / M.I.A.
In an interview with Huck, the Sri Lankan performer revealed that JAY-Z, who was her manager at that time for Roc Nation, wanted er to sign a “ridiculous” settlement, but she refused. She states:
It [the hatred] was from everybody and it just felt ridiculous. When they hit me with the lawsuit it activated so many people to come after me on so many different levels. What’s in the film is a very tiny bit of what happened to me in real life. It’s quite entertaining for Steve to have made it into this nice little cookie but the reality of that was way worse. A lot of people I feel got off the hook. If you’re talking about racism and sexism, that moment in my life showed the cracks in everyone I knew. I was at Roc Nation at the time and Jay Z was managing me. The lawsuit was so ridiculous, it proposed that they would keep one hundred percent of my earnings for the rest of my life if I ever earned more than $2 million dollars. Jay Z was, like, ‘you should sign that shit’ and I was, like, ‘no.’
Although M.I.A. has moved on from the incident, she's still frustrated that a middle finger caused so much political discourse.
“A middle finger, it’s like get a fucking grip," she recalls. "People were like, ‘oh you’re lucky you’re not in jail, give up all your profit, be this slave for the rest of your life.'"
"Oh god, I hope the NFL doesn’t sue me again for talking about it," she quipped before keeping mum about the brouhaha altogether.
M.I.A.'s MATANGI / MAYA / M.I.A. documentary recently premiere at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival.
Watch M.I.A. Talk About Her Documentary MATANGI / MAYA / M.I.A.
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