Earlier this week, it was widely reported that Beyonce would be starring in a biopic about South African woman, Saartjie (Sarah) Baartman. In 1810, Saartjie was lured from her native land to Europe with promises of riches only to be displayed as a sexual freak thanks to her extremely curvaceous figure.
When news broke that King Bey would be stepping into Baartman’s shoes for the big screen, local chief of the Ghonaqua Peoples, the First Indigenous Peoples of South Africa, Jean Burgess, decided he would pop off at the mouth and blast Beyonce for taking the role.
“She lacks the basic human dignity to be worthy of writing Sarah’s story, let alone playing the part,” Chief Burgess told South African news outlet News24. “Ignoring the fact that the KhoiKhoi is alive and that Sarah’s story would have an impact on how we are portrayed, is a mistake of great magnitude.
Strong words from a man now forced to eat crow after Bey’s rep shutdown the biopic rumors in a statement to Billboard. “Beyonce is in no way tied to this project,” her rep told the outlet. “This is an important story that should be told, however.”