This time, however, controversy surrounding the inclusion of 50 Cent seems to have taken center stage. According to rapper N.O.R.E., the “Get Rich or Die Tryin’” emcee was not originally apart of the star-studded hip hop lineup. Instead, N.O.R.E claims Jay-Z — who along with his company Roc Nation are responsible for choosing the acts for the halftime show — was given an ultimatum to include the rapper by none other than Eminem.
“I said to Jay-Z, I have to ask this straight up. ‘Who is gonna perform at the NFL?’ And he [Jay] said to me — and I’m sorry for everybody who don’t understand — and he [Jay] said, ‘the White guy called for 50 Cent,’” said N.O.R.E while speaking with Snoop Dogg on the podcast “Drink Champs.” “I said, ‘Who is the White guy? Jimmy Iovine?’ And he said, ‘No, Eminem called directly for Fifty and he said I can’t do it if I can’t bring 50 with me.’”
Word of the conversation made its way to 50 Cent, who was less than pleased. On social, where he is known for calling out people, 50 took aim directly at Jay-Z. In the first post accompanied by a screenshot of a story about the situation, 50 wrote, “Why would he [Eminem] have to say that should be the question? NORE your big homie is running around trying to look like a gay painter. LOL.”
The “Power” franchise co-creator followed up with a side-by-side photo of the late artist Jean-Michael Basquiat and Jay-Z dressed as the artist for Halloween. “Why did he say white boy, why didn’t he say the biggest rap artist in the world? Happy Easter! Man enjoy the holidays,” he wrote.
Fans chiming in on the matter had a range of opinions from those agreeing that Jay-Z was wrong for referring to Eminem as “white guy,” to 50 needing to sit this one out altogether.
“Better leave HOV alone before your lil power shows get cancelled.”
“Still salty about that Renegade verse,” wrote one person making mention of the Jay-Z and Eminem collaboration on “The Blueprint” album.
“50 messy and we all know NORE loves to talk.”
“It’s 6:49 [a.m.] you wake up being petty did you sleep”
“Now that’s the diff b/t real friends and industry friends”