Michael B. Jordan almost went the way of other celebs when it comes to booze and cultural appropriation — but he saw the early warning signs, and decided to pivot.
The actor’s been under fire since this past weekend for photos that leaked, apparently showing him at some sort of a launch party for a new rum line, with which he seemed to have a direct connection. The rum was called “J’ouvert” — the name of a traditional Caribbean festival, akin to Carnival.
The photos seriously pissed off some people — especially those with Trinidadian roots, where J’ouvert is said to have started — who accused MBJ of cultural appropriation, exploitation and outright insensitivity in trying to commercialize something to which he has zero ties.
There were rumblings he might have partnered with someone with a Trinidadian background for this venture — but even still, it didn’t look good … and Michael was silent for days over it.
Now, he’s finally speaking out and promising to rebrand in the near future, writing in part … “I just wanna say on behalf of myself and my partners, our intention was never to offend or hurt a culture (we love & respect) & hoped to celebrate & shine a positive light on.”
Obviously, MBJ was looking to make a buck too — but seems to have caught wind of the backlash, doing “a lot of listening” and having “community conversations.” So, as a result, he says they’re coming up with a new name.