RUNAWAY " THE MOVIE " BY KANYE WEST
"Dedicated to Superhoaxman and the journey we will take in this world...together .
" PARIS, FRANCE
Oct 23 2010 11:44 PM
In an unprecidented interview today Kanye West Explains Michael Jackson 'Runaway' Scene MC says he used King of Pop's likeness to represent cult mentality.
In a production wrought with powerful imagery, the Michael Jackson procession scene in Kanye West's film debut, "Runaway," is among the most impactful and intriguing.
Around seven minutes into the movie, which centers on the
ill-fated romance between West's character, Griffin, and a
phoenix played by Selita Ebanks, fireworks herald a parade
of a crimson-clad marching band flanked by a mob of followers
sporting pointed hoods reminiscent of the garb worn by the
Ku Klux Klan. The band surrounds a larger-than-life illuminated
bust of the late King of Pop, Michael Jackson, while Griffin a
nd the phoenix excitedly look on.
When West sat down with MTV News' Sway for a live Q&A session that followed the film's premiere Saturday (October 23) on MTV, he explained that he juxtaposed Jackson's likeness with the hooded marchers to make a comment about the potent pull of cult mentality.
"The hood, what it does represent to me ... in relation to the
Michael Jackson thing is not the KKK but the concept of cult,
because it's multiple people with this hood on," West explained.
"It's me taking [the phoenix] to my world and saying,
'Let me show you what my world is about.' "
West said he invoked the image of the late icon, whose expansive
cultural reach was unparalleled, to demonstrate the energy of
the pop realm.
"The greatest, biggest pop-cultural figure of all time,
arguably bigger than Jesus Christ, is Michael Jackson.
You have the band in front of him, marching ... and you have the cult around it," West said, before explaining the scene that precedes the procession, of a young boy in mid-sprint brandishing a flaming baton.
"If you saw the kid in the beginning, he's running and running
at top speed holding his torch, and his torch represents his
thoughts and ideals. At the end, after he's been cultivated,
he has the hood on now and he's walking extremely slow.
That's basically how people think," West said.
"It's the way society has set people up to be able to control
them, slave mentalities."
Yeezy added that coaxing people into social conformity is an
effective form of control — assuming the followers don't
decide to break away on their own trails.