Morris Chestnut has been considered eye candy for more than two decades, but now, it seems some of his fans may need their eyes checked. “The Best Man: Final Chapters” lead is known for his boyishly handsome looks, bright smile, and chocolate brown skin. But apparently, there’s a growing trend of people mistaking the 54-year-old for other handsome Black men in the industry.
“Oh man, see, I get mixed up with — people say, ‘Yeah, I loved you in ‘Fast and the Furious.’ Tyrese,” he told host Jennifer Hudson when he appeared on her eponymous daytime television show last week. But the cases of mistaken identity do not stop at the R&B crooner.
“Very recently, for the first couple times, they thought I was Charlamagne. Charlamagne Tha God,” he continued. “And then, obviously, sometimes …I was in Starbucks one day and they said, ‘It’s so nice to meet you, Mr. Taye Diggs.’ And then there’s Taye.”
Chestnut then shared why he believes some mistake him for other Black male entertainers, noting, “I think every bald-headed Black dude with a goatee.” When asked if thought he resembled any of the aforementioned men, the actor said he could somewhat see what his fans were getting at. “I think I could. Yeah, you know, I think I could,” he remarked.
After seeing his name mentioned on the show, Charlamagne played into the ongoing mix-up with fans in a past Instagram post.
“Finally, the Truth of the Multiverse of Baldness is Being Revealed,” wrote the radio personality. “For all the times y’all tried to break my soul and call me delusional as if I just be making s**t up. Now the only problem with this clip is @jenniferhudson didn’t use the right picture. You have to use the ones where I’m dong the sexy-squint, then when you squint, when I’m sexy squinting you can see it.”
Chestnut previously poked fun at the fact that he seems to have a familiar face among his peers. When the Lensa app for retouching photos was trending across social media, the “Two Can Play That” star indulged in the antics to see what his AI mockup would look like. To his surprise, the images favored Charlamagne, Tyrese, and Diggs. He shared them along with the following caption, “Man, this AI portrait app got me messed up! I can’t tell if I’m looking at myself, @tayediggs, @cthagod or @tyrese.”
In the comments, tickled fans could hardly hold back their laughter. One person wrote, “Please do not get Lenard [Charlamagne] started.” And others commented, “You look like Monetell Williams on the second one” and “The last one looks like Charla or Tyrese but I don’t see Taye anywhere! Handsome man nevertheless always been my celebrity crush since I saw the first Best Man as a child.”
Speaking of “The Best Man” franchise, the often swooned-over celebrity recently credited the 1999 flick with helping him land a more diverse selection of roles. “Professionally, it changed my life because film studios began to see me as a leading man,” Chestnut told REVOLT in an exclusive interview. He continued, “So, I was able to land a few lead roles. It’s been a blessing to be a part of the series because it’s been around for so long, and people’s lives have been parallel to the characters as they navigate their lives. I’m happy Malcolm selected me to fulfill the role.”
However, despite his debonair looks and successful résumé, it has not always been a cakewalk for him to snag acting opportunities. The 2022 Hollywood Walk of Fame inductee said that early on in his career colorism heavily swayed how studio heads cast talent.
“When I was coming up, it was difficult,” he explained. “When I was first starting out many, many years ago, gang genre was in. There was some type of skin issue to where they would see the darker-skinned actors for the gang members,” whereas lighter-skinned actors were cast as the good guys.
He also credits fellow actor Wesley Snipes for helping to break that mold. Chestnut stated, “He did play the gang member in ‘New Jack City,’ but when he was in ‘Mo’ Better Blues’ and he was on the balcony doing his thing, women started saying, ‘Hmmm. That’s kinda sexy.’ Wesley kinda ushered it in for us.”