Rappers love giving back almost as much as they love buying diamond chains and cars, and one of their new favorite ways is buying fans’ tickets to see movies they feel display positive images of Blackness and role models other than rappers and athletes. TI is the latest entertainer to hop on this bandwagon, partnering with Walmart to purchase and give away 300 tickets to an Atlanta advance screening of Marvel’s highly-anticipated Black Panther film.
The pioneering Atlanta rapper-turned-businessman tweeted out Tuesday night that he’d given the tickets away at a local Walmart store, writing, “Me and @Walmart joined efforts to support the community with free tickets for customers to attend an Advance Screening of @MarvelStudios @theblackpanther. We gave away 300 tickets to deserving families yesterday at the Cascade Walmart store. #BlackPanther”
Other celebrities have also joined in the trend, with actress Octavia Spencer pledging on Instagram that she would buy out a theater in Mississippi “to ensure that all our brown children can see themselves as a superhero.” She wrote “I will be in MS when this movie opens. I think I will buy out a theatre in an underserved community there to ensure that all our brown children can see themselves as a superhero. I will let you know where and when Mississippi. Stay tuned. #KingsAndQueensWillRise #blackpanthermovie”
Talk show host/comedian Ellen DeGeneres also gave away tickets on her show, footing the bill for members of Harlem’s Boys And Girls Club.