Last week, following the premiere of Jay-Z and Kanye West’s “Otis” video, many viewers walked away from the screen asking the same question: “Who was the little guy in the back in the suit and shades pushing the chopped-up Maybach?” Some laughed after suggesting it was Kanye’s right-hand man and G.O.O.D. Music executive Don C, but after a good stare it was confirmed the individual stunting alongside ‘Ye was none other than actor Aziz Ansari.
Aziz’s appearance in the lead video, and potentially sole visual, from WTT was actually a no-brainer, considering the actor’s relationship with West. The moonlighting comedian rang in the New Year with the Throne, and last year, Ansari electrified a Comedy Central crowd when he reflected on meeting the Louis Vuitton Don, an encounter that resulted in Aziz performing an impromptu stand-up routine in the rapper’s living room in front of a small crowd.
“My favorite part was when every once in a while, somebody would be in the kitchen making a drink and they’d make a little noise, and Kanye would jump up and yell, ‘Yo! Shut the f— up! Homey’s over here trying to tell some jokes!’ ” Ansari recalled during the comedy special. “Which is the best thing anybody has ever yelled at a comedy show.”
Just in time for his new film “30 Minutes or Less,” Aziz spoke with Mr. Carter’s digital homebase, Life + Times, during a Q&A session, speaking on his two minutes of fame as hip-hop’s newest hypeman.
Life+Times: Your new movie is in theaters and you make a cameo appearance in a JAY Z/Kanye video, are you having your best summer ever?
Aziz Ansari: It’s been pretty good. I also had a really tasty donut for breakfast. Things are going my way.
L+T: There’s a part in the “Otis” video where you seem to be pantomiming Ye’s lyrics as he stands on top of that Maybach, did [director] Spike [Jonze] tell you to do that or were you just in the moment?
AA: Spike just told me to be their hypeman and do whatever I felt like doing, so that was in the moment.
L+T: Did you receive a custom Watch the Throne commemorative watch?
AA: Nah, that was just for the producers. I got a Watch the Throne commemorative beer cozy made for myself though.
Were you surprised to see Aziz in the “Otis” video? Let us know in the comments.