Seasoned rapper and actor Ice Cube walked away from an upcoming Sony movie which could have seen him pocket $9 million after he refused a request from the project’s producers to get the COVID-19 vaccine shot, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
The Friday actor was reportedly billed to co-star alongside Jack Black for the upcoming movie – which is titled Oh Hell No. The 52-year-old and Black collaborated on the movie in June, and shooting was set to commence in Hawaii this winter. But the project’s producers decided the cast needed to get vaccinated. Sources who spoke to the news outlet said the project’s producers are now searching for an actor to replace Ice Cube.
The rapper has been an avid mask-wearing advocate since the pandemic started. In August, he was reportedly part of a group of people who donated over 2,000 face masks to Oklahoma’s Bacone College. And during the lockdown in August last year, Ice Cube also partnered with Black Out – a clothing brand – to sell “Check Yo Self Before You Wreck Yo Self” branded T-shirts. Proceeds from the sales are donated to frontline health workers.
Oh Hell No isn’t the first project Ice Cube has walked away from over the past few months as he also exited production for the boxing movie, Flint Strong. The reason for that exit is, however, unknown. And just like Oh Hell No, producers are also looking for another co-lead actor following his exit.
The issue of cast and crew in Hollywood getting vaccinated for projects has become a delicate situation, per The Hollywood Reporter. And according to a July agreement between guilds and studios, producers will have the choice “to implement mandatory vaccination policies for casts and crew in Zone A” — where cast and crew are in close contact while working — “on a production-by-production basis.”