In a new interview for the “Hip Hop Confessions” podcast, Christopher “Kid” Reid rehashed how the two rap duos’ worlds got flipped, turned upside down.
Kid said he and Christopher “Play” Martin landed their roles in the party flick after Smith and Jeff had a legal feud with a production company.
In 1998, the Philly duo recorded and released a song titled “A Nightmare on My Street,” which was inspired by the über successful “Nightmare on Elm Street” film.
However, they failed to get authorization from New Line Cinema, which distributed the movie, before it was released on their “He’s the DJ, I’m the Rapper” album.
Smith and Jeff also filmed a music video that aired on MTV before New Line Cinema filed a copyright infringement lawsuit and had it pulled from airwaves. The suit was ultimately settled out of court, and copies of the video were reportedly destroyed, according to Rolling Stone.
As a result, when the studio propositioned them with the “House Party” script, they turned it down.
“At that particular time, we didn’t know that backstory,” Kid told host Mad Skillz. “We never knew any of that back stuff was going on. We didn’t know if we were second choice, or first choice, or whatever choice.”
Kid ‘N Play secured their roles after nailing a screen test, where executives witnessed the pandemonium they caused when excited fans saw them.
In a previous interview for “Vlad TV,” Kid explained how his and Play’s beef with NBC cost them their chance at portraying the Fresh Prince and his sidekick who had a knack for being thrown from the Banks family’s home.
At the time, the “Do This My Way” rappers had their own eponymous cartoon show airing on the network.
“We had two TV deals over at NBC. One was for the animated cartoon series, ‘Kid ‘N Play’ cartoon series. First rappers to ever have a cartoon, right, before Hammer, before everybody. And we were so proud of it, man … And we had a sitcom deal at NBC,” recalled Kid.
The animated series premiered in April 1990 and aired a total of 13 episodes before NBC reportedly canceled it to focus on live-audience sitcoms like “Saved by the Bell.”
Kid claimed he and Play were so distraught over the end of their cartoon that they wanted nothing to do with the network. “We was feeling some kind of way. … We was thinking small-minded.”
“That deal went away — that’s the deal that Jeff and them, Will and them, slid right up in that. That was the s—t. We’d uh had that s—t first, we’d uh had both,” said Kid.
In the end, he said they learned an invaluable lesson on not making rash business decisions. “That was an error. That was a mistake. You know, like you say, Jeff and them might say we turned down ‘House Party’ because we might have been emotional for that …but that would have been a great opportunity for them,” he said about “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.”
Kid continued, “I have no doubt if them two, if they did ‘House Party,’ it would have been a hit as well. … And if we had did the sitcom, trust me, we would of did well at that, you know what I mean? We were always, you know, kind of on the same level kind of vibe. … We blew that one. … That would have been a golden opportunity.”
“Y’all were the perfect fit for the movie that’s why y’all ended up with it,” commented one person in the comment section of the “Hip Hop Confessions” video.
“Crazy. Classic movie but the sitcom would have stretched their tv career,” read another comment that appeared on the podcast’s Instagram post promoting the episode.
A third comment read, “Wooowwwww,” while another added, “Y’all knew House Party was written for Will Smith and Jazzy Jeff?”
Kid ‘N Play revisited their party antics with a short cameo in the LeBron James “House Party” remake, which was released in January 2023.