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    BAFTA Producer Defends Ariana DeBose Amid Criticisms Over Rapping

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    Ariana DeBose made headlines over the weekend after her viral rapping. The West Side Story actress opened the award show in February 19. During her performance, she rapped out the female nominees, including Jamie Lee Curtis, Cate Blanchett, Viola Davis, and Angela Bassett. 

    She rapped in part, “Angela Bassett did the thing, Viola Davis, my Woman King. Blanchett Cate you’re a genius, Jamie Lee you are all of us.”

    The 32-year-old actress has been receiving criticisms over it and now, Nick Bullen, BAFTA producer, told Variety, “I think it’s incredibly unfair, to be frank. I absolutely loved it. Everybody I’ve spoken to who was in the room absolutely loved it. She’s a huge star, she was amazing.”

    Nick added, “The songs she was singing are very familiar songs, the room was clapping, and people were sort of dancing to the music. That rap section in the middle, mentioning the women in the room, was because it’s been a great year for women in film, and we wanted to celebrate that.”

    He also mentioned that the Oscar winner was dedicated to the job, saying, “She only had a few weeks to put this whole thing together. She worked with a great musical director and choreographer. So, it was a real team effort. She had an amazing team around her, and she and her team put the whole piece together.”

    According to the producer, critics’ negative reaction revealed how they don’t like “change.”

    He said, “There’s a view that the BAFTAs have to be this slightly stiff, traditional British, middle-England messaging. But American awards shows have much more razzmatazz, much more showbiz and perhaps a broader range of people being involved. We felt we’re not about revolution, we’re about evolution.”

    Ariana deleted her Twitter account after the viral clip circulated online and many bashed her performance. Meanwhile, she wrote, “Honestly I love this,” underneath an Instagram collage featuring memes of her “Angela Bassett did the thing.”

    On the other hand, she took to her Instagram Story on February 20 to post a cryptic message intended to her critics. The message, which was originally shared by @BossBabeCorner stating, “Babygirl [sic], in a world full of choices, choose yourself.” 


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