Kanye West is a film producer, too! 

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On December 3, Kanye West attended the New York premiere of writer/director and star Chris Rock’s “Top Five” at the Ziegfeld Theater. He and Jay Z are producers on the film. Chris Rock, Rosario Dawson, Gabrielle Union, Cedric the Entertainer, JB Smoove, Ben Vereen, Jerry Seinfeld, Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson (executive music producer), Karlie Redd, Jay Pharoah, Michael Che, Bruce Bruce, Hayley Marie Norman, Brian Regan, Scott Rudin (producer), Eli Bush (producer),Tony Hernandez (executive producer), Lila Yacoub (executive producer), Manuel Alberto Claro (director of photography), Ludwig Göransson (composer), Richard Hoover (production designer), Anne McCabe (editor), Amy Roth (costume designer), and Victoria Thomas (casting director) all walked the red carpet.

Additional celebrity attendees included: Ice-T, Coco, our friends Sherry Bronfman, singer Shaina Farrow, Ben Bronfman and Geoffrey Fletcher, 2Chainz,  Sean Pecas, CC Sabathia, Janina Gavankar, Jadakiss, Baseball player Ron Darling, Cassandra Grey, Kenny Leon, Steve McQueen, Gayle King and Louis C. K., to name a few.


Read what the cast had to say below:

Laurissa Romain plays Rosario Dawson’s daughter in the film.

Q:  How did you get on board with this project?

A:  I auditioned and fell in love with the role.  I think it is so fun to play.  Get to be sassy and fun.


Q:  How was the audition process for you?

A:  It was really fun.  It was only two auditions.  So I auditioned the first time and then they brought me in for the callback with Rosario.  So it was a chemistry test.


Q:  How was it like working with Rosario?

A:  So amazing.  We just clicked and now she is like my second mom honestly.


Q:  And how was it working with Chris Rock?

A:  So amazing.  He is a genius.  He really is a genius.  I am not going to spoil anything for you guys but honestly when you see this movie you are going to be like, ‘Who thought of that?  That’s so amazing.’


Q:  And this whole film has such a star studded cast.  Were you a little nervous to work with all of them?  How were you feeling about that?

A:  Oh my god yes.  I worked with Chris Rock and Rosario Dawson on set.  I didn’t get to work with anyone else unfortunately.  But hopefully I get to meet them.  I am just so honored to be a part of this right now.


Q:  And how was it like filming for you?

A:  Really, really fun.  Really amazing.


Q:  What was your favorite scene from the movie?

A:  So many.  I love when Chris Rock talks about how he wants to sneak into the theater and see his own film and see the people laugh and enjoy themselves.  I think that really came from his heart.  It’s not something people just write.  I think he probably does that in real life too.

 Bruce Bruce

Q:  How did you get on board with this project?

A:  Well, first of all, I got a call from Chris Rock.  And he said, ‘Hey, I want you to do this movie for me.’  And it wasn’t even an if, and, or but or ‘I’ll think about it,’ it was done.  I mean it’s Chris Rock, who is a legend, he is excellent, and he is the man.


Q:  And when he called you what was your reaction?

A:  “Oh yes.”  Almost like when a man asks a woman to get married.  That kind of yes.  And to be honest, I would have paid Chris to be in this movie.  He didn’t have to pay me.  It was fun.  80% of it was ad libbed, 20% was scripted.  And it was just good working with him.


Q:  And this movie is filled with so many stars.  How was it like working with all of them?

A:  The key thing is that working with them in the movie is just like working with them on the road.  I worked with Cedric, Tracy Morgan, JB Smoove, Kevin Hart.  I worked with all of them and it is just like working with them on the road.  And working with them on the movie was much easier because we did what we wanted to do.  It was even fun having lunch with them, so it was cool.


Q:  What was your favorite moment of filming this movie?

A:  My favorite moment was in the strip club scene.  I am not going to tell you about it but make sure you see the strip club scene because I was there, I made it rain, so make sure you check out the strip club scene.


Q:  Is there anything coming up next for you?

A:  Yeah, look for the new Bruce Bruce show, the sitcom called “Bruceskis”


We also spoke with Justin Simien the writer/director of “Dear White People.”


Q:  What do you think about the premise of this film?

A:  You know what I always love?  That Chris Rock always brings the real truth to an experience.  You are laughing your ass off but you are hearing a truth about the human condition, about his black experience, and I really, really appreciate that authenticity in everything that he does, because that’s what I’m about as an artist and a filmmaker and there are so few black artists that really bring a totally authentic viewpoint on things.  And it is so refreshing anytime he makes a movie and I am just so excited to see it


Q:  This movie has a lot of music in it so who are your favorite artists?

A:  Oh man.  You know, this is the worst time to ask me this question because I’m in an old people jam.  Like I’m listening to Donny Hathaway right now.  I’m listening to Chuck Taylor and Dizzy Gillespie.  I’m having a very old folk’s moment, like, I’m not even going to lie.  I think because in “Dear White People,” we had to be just on the cutting edge of music for so long that I just want to listen to things from the 30’s right now.  So I couldn’t even tell you.  I’m a fan of a lot of people.  I’m not going to lie, I kind of bang with the new Taylor Swift album.  I banged with it.  So I’m all over the place.  And I’m sure this movie will introduce a whole new slate of songs for me to be obsessed about.  They had a bigger music budget, I feel, than I did.


Q:  So who are some of your favorite comedians?

A:  Well, Chris Rock is the man right now.  He’s like a comedic prophet.  He speaks the truth.  Obviously I’m a fan of Richard Pryor, I know he is going through some things right now but I have to shine the light on my man Bill Cosby, Dave Chappelle is a favorite of mine too.


Q:  Did you listen to any of them growing up?

A:  You know what?  That really wasn’t my thing growing up per se.  I was more into pop music and filmmakers.  But now man, who doesn’t?  Freaking love those guys.


Q:  Is there anything coming up next for you?

A:  Yeah, we are working on getting a TV show done and touring with the book “Dear White People” and hopefully I’m just a few weeks away from announcing my next feature.  So it is all coming together.

A party followed at Terminal 5 where Questlove was on the turntables.

“Top Five” hits theaters December 12.

-Vinesh Vora