When Top Five came out back in 2014, Tiffany Haddish hadn’t yet broken through with Girls Trip. However, she had been in movies like A Christmas Wedding and shows like Real Husbands of Hollywood and was becoming known in the industry, which is why she was straight up offered a role in the Chris Rock starrer. The only problem? They wanted her to expose her boobs.
Tiffany Haddish recalled the story as part of a lengthy roundtable discussion over at THR. The comedienne is known for her outrageous antics on the big screen and that’s what she wanted to always be known for – not her body. So, even when an offer was straight up made for her to join Top Five, she explained why she “didn’t want the role” and had no problem telling her management team that.
You know, when I first hit the scene, I was offered a lot of roles where they want you to expose your breasts. I remember that movie that Chris Rock did [Top Five] and it's like he meets the two girls and they have a threesome and then Cedric [the Entertainer] gets in there and he's supposed to ‘blah’ all over their faces — just let that baby batter go all up in their face. And it was like, ‘Tiffany, they're offering you the role.’ And I was like, ‘I don't want that role. I'm a stand-up comedian and I don't let people do that in my face in real life, so why would I do it in this movie?’ Like, you ought to have a little bit of respect for me, period. God made this face for a reason, and you're not going to disrespect it.
To note, if you’ve seen Top Five, the moments Chris Rock’s character spends with Cedric the Entertainer and women are not meant to be an indulgent exploration of a hedonistic lifestyle. They are portrayed as Rock’s character Andre’s low point in the early aughts in which he was accused of rape and decided to get sober. Regardless, that doesn’t mean Tiffany Haddish should have taken a role she was uncomfortable with or that didn’t fit into her own personal ideas of herself as an actress and funnywoman on TV and the big screen.
She didn’t take the role, instead working on TV’s Real Husbands of Hollywood and If Loving You Is Wrong before landing the role of Hi-C in Jordan Peele and Keegan-Michael Key’s Keanu. That led to Girls Trip which led to movies like Night School and Uncle Drew, as well as a cameo in Maroon Five’s memorable “Girls Like You” video.
Tiffany Haddish also said she’s made it a point throughout her career to turn down jobs that don’t fit into her personal code of ethics or branding. She's previously mentioned saying no to movies like Get Out, so it's not just nudity that sometimes turns her off of a role. She talks about thinking about herself not just as a person but as a brand that other people in the world are seeing and consuming, noting,
I feel like sometimes my representation tries to get me to go outside my lane, and if it is against my morals — and I do have some, I know I'm a little wild, but I do have standards — then somebody might get fired. It's like, I'm a company, I'm a brand, and if you try to go against the policy of the company, you might not need to be working here anymore. So my people, we have weekly conversations about where I'm at mentally, what I want to do. And right now, almost everything I'm doing, I'm producing.
Next up Tiffany Haddish will be producing Here Today from director Billy Crystal. She’ll also be in that movie, along with On the Count of Three and The Card Counter.