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Update: RZA says Azealia Banks is to blame for altercation with Russell Crowe

on October 20, 2016, 3:45pm

Photo by Philip Cosores

Over the weekend, Azealia Banks allegedly got into an altercation with actor Russell Crowe during a private party at the Beverly Hills Hotel.

Citing guests who attended the party, TMZ reported that the confrontation occurred after Banks laughed and made some comments about the music playlist of Crowe, who was hosting the event. Crowe’s guests came to his defense, leading Banks, who multiple witnesses say was acting “erratic,” to allegedly lash out and make both verbal and physical threats.

Banks disputed TMZ’s account. In a since-deleted Facebook post, she claimed Crowe “called me a n****r, choked me, threw me out and spat at me.” In a subsequent interview with TMZ, Banks said tensions rose between her and Crowe and his guests because when “men are making jokes, you [a woman] can’t try to be funny.” There was some “bruising of male egos” and “a lot of trying to put me in my place,” she said, “which kind of backfired ’cause I’m just as quick and witty.”

RZA, who brought Banks to the party, has now shared his side of the story. He places the blame squarely on Banks: “Before the night is over Azealia is insulting half the room she becomes loud and obnoxious. There was nothing funny about her behavior. I felt a little embarrassed because she was my guest.”

Eventually “Azealia threaten[s] to cut a girl in the face with a glass, then actually grabs a glass and physically attacks for no logical reason. Russell blocked the attack and expelled her from the suite,” according to RZA, who adds, “Seeing is believing and I saw her behave as an obnoxious erratic individual and in the circles I frequent this was unprecedented. I was totally puzzles by her and thought maybe meds or booze or something had her zoned out.”

In his Facebook post, RZA also expanded on his relationship with Banks. Despite her reputation in the industry, he cast her in his next film Coco; he explained, “I heard the rumors of her problems in the industry but disregarded them with the rationality everyone is innocent until proven guilty.” The production went down without incident, according to RZA. However, afterward, Banks reached out asking for help getting a record contract. RZA also said he supported Banks financially, including paying for her trip to Los Angeles.

Following the incident, Banks said she severed ties with RZA because he allegedly “just stood there like a chump” during the altercation. “I can’t be represented by some chump.”

“My art, talent and success speaks for it self and Azealia’s recent slander of me and self victimization reflect’s the personality of the person that was in that room that night,” RZA wrote to conclude his post. “I have a wife, daughters, sisters and females on my staff so I protect women everyday. I pray none of them ever behave the way I witnessed Azealia Banks behaved that night.”

Read RZA’s letter in full below. Banks reportedly filed a police report following the altercation, but it remains to be seen whether she’ll press charges.

Update: Watch RZA discuss the incident with TMZ.

Update: Banks has responded in a series of postings to Facebook.

“RZA has clearly been given no legal advice and went to straight to TMZ out of his feelings to try and gaslight me,” she wrote in her initial post. “Whatever pieces are left of his brain after years and years of smoking dust stupidly allowed him to ramble himself into incriminating his friend, and completely debunking their entire made up theory.” She added, “You mean to tell me, that a 300lb man needed to use ALL OF THAT FORCE, to remove an “erratic” guest from a party ?”

In a second posting, Banks claimed that she called Crowe “old and fat,” but only after he “bagged on my music videos, saying he could shoot them better on an iPhone.”

She then took another shoot at RZA, writing, “The OG’s are that starved for this played out illusion of being a part of the illuminati (or whatever the fuck) that they will Shit where they eat. Just to make sure they get to keep getting invited on boat parties and dumb shit.”