Why can’t Tiffany Haddish have her moment?
That’s what some people have asked after Tucker Max, the co-author of her new memoir “The Last Black Unicorn,” revealed that he was responsible for essentially writing the whole thing.
Typically, co-authors and ghostwriters don’t reveal themselves and stay in the background; but not in Max’s case. He actually went on a mini-social media campaign to let people know that he penned the memoir, which is why some have accused him of stealing Haddish’s shine. He also said some of the stories in the memoir are the best he’s ever written.
“No, I did not transition to become a Black woman (that would be quite the story wouldn’t it?),” Max tweeted. “I was the co-writer for Tiffany Haddish’s book. It’s amazing, read it.”
He also said despite the “Girls Trip” star being talented and strong with words, she actually lacked skills in the writing department.
“As you well know, thinking and talking and writing are all very different things. Writing is a distinct skill,” he told Jezebel in a recent interview. “Tiffany’s a fantastic storyteller and speaker but she’s not a very good writer. My job was to get her whole self into that.”
Max also stated that when he first met Haddish, she was barely known outside of Hollywood, and she couldn’t have gotten a book deal without him.
“I didn’t know who Tiffany was,” he explained. “[Her agent Joel Zadak] said that she loved my stuff and wanted to work with me … I talked about this with her manager. Definitely, one of the reasons they wanted me too is because she wasn’t well-known at the time. If she tried to get a book deal now she’d get a huge deal easily. It’d be a bidding war. There’ll be one for her second book. But at the time she was a relative unknown.”
Max also said he was brought on to increase the chance of people buying the memoir.
“I told Joel and Tiffany early on, I don’t care if my name’s on the book. What matters is if we do a great book. I get paid the same either way.”
In addition, the veteran author explained other people worked on the book as well, not just him since he owns his own business. “Her contract is with my company not me personally,” he explained. “There were other people on my team who worked on aspects of it. It was a team effort.”
Other than Max’s proclamation on Twitter, many would have been oblivious to his co-authorship of Haddish’s memoir, especially considering his name isn’t on the book cover. However, feminist magazine Jezebel made it their business to not only reach out to Max but to lay out his controversial past. Max has a history of talking about sex, women and drinking in a raunchy way that some may have a problem with. Though Haddish and her team reached out to Max because of his way with comedy. Much of his material speaks of a wild frat guy lifestyle, and he hardly held back the explicit details.
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The magazine pointed out that Max has written “The Definitive Book of Pick-Up Lines and “I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell” to name a few releases, and many of his stories are also housed on the TuckerMax.com website, where he chose to describe himself.
“I get excessively drunk at inappropriate times, disregard social norms, indulge every whim, ignore the consequences of my actions, mock idiots and posers, sleep with more women than is safe or reasonable and just generally act like a raging d–khead,” he wrote.
Tucker also said some things that are racist that have offended people.
“My friend has a Black dad and a ginger mom,” he tweeted in 2012. “When asked what race he is, he says ‘ninjer.’”
“Any hot Black girls free today?” Max also tweeted in that same year. “Looking to knock out Valentine’s Day and Black History Month at all once.”
Jezebel also pointed out that Max created a “female rating system” in the past and once in front of a New York Times writer said to two women: “I’m trying to get you drunk so you can’t consent to sex anymore.”
Since then, Max has turned over a new leaf as far as his thoughts on women go, but a lot of folks still seem to dislike him, which may increase after he took so much credit for Haddish’s memoir.
One commenter called out the magazine asking, “I loathe Tucker Max, but this is such a non-story. Why do you care?”
“You have to tear down successful Black people. You haven’t figured this sh–out yet?” a second person responded.
“Because few people can resist the allure of putting a Black woman in her place,” wrote a third.
But there were other reactions and some believe that Max shouldn’t be blamed because Haddish chose to work with him. In fact, it’s a point that Max brought up to the Jezebel writer during their interview. He also told the writer that she might be sexist and racist for thinking Haddish didn’t know exactly what she was doing.
“The assumption is that Tiffany is not smart or capable enough to choose herself,” he said. “It’s a sexist insult to Tiffany.”
Others continued to blast the Jezebel article and said Haddish shouldn’t even be criticized for working with someone with a questionable or controversial past.
“If the white woman who fixed her fingers to write the above article or any of the other white women commenting underneath have a problem with Haddish’s comedy and her collaborating with a problematic dude, even though Amy Schumer has been celebrated ‘round these parts several times over, stop telling on yourselves is all I have to say to you. I wonder if anyone reached out to Schumer’s people for an explanation for her numerous appearances on Opie and Anthony’s show?”
“This picking on Tiffany and not the white female comedians who have worked with questionable men is racist,” another person wrote. “I don’t think people really understand what racism is.”