Frank Ocean Tells Chipotle to "F- Off" but His Corporate Distrust Won't Last Forever
Frank Ocean: beautiful voice-haver, former Odd Future member, expert headband-wearer, and now, Frank Ocean is Chipotle's public enemy number one. Just how did one of the most zen people in R&B manage to piss off a chain of environmentally-friendly burrito restaurants, exactly? Well, remember the Chipotle scarecrow commercial about factory farming with that haunting Fiona Apple cover of "Pure Imagination"? Originally, that was supposed to be Ocean (aka Christopher Breaux) — they even cut him a check for half his fee ($212,500) and everything.
But the due date for the song came and went, with Ocean's people instead sending a letter that read "When Frank was asked to participate in this project, Chipotle's representatives told him that the thrust of the campaign was to promote responsible farming. There was no Chipotle reference or logo in the initial presentation, and Chipotle told Frank that was an intentional element of the campaign."
But Ocean didn't return the money, so Chipotle sued. The case has yet to go to court, and it's unclear if it will, since Chipotle got their money back — and then some. Ocean posted a picture of the check he sent them on his personal Tumblr. The corporation has been repaid in full, but Ocean wrote "FUCK OFF" in the memo.
It's not uncommon for a celebrity to give "The Man" the finger, since so many are the sort of bleeding heart liberals that give Fox News anchors nightmares. But when they do, it's a sort of uncomfortable place, because many of them act as the PR arm of huge corporations. Sure, Alec Baldwin may have dropped by the Occupy Wall Street protests, but he's still more than happy to do commercials for Capital One. Kanye West went to Occupy too, and his song "New Slaves" outright denounces the corporate system, but he still loves to watch corporations fight over who gets to make his sneaker line.
Frank Ocean may have some serious chutzpah now, but he's young yet. Once he attends a couple more Grammy ceremonies, it probably won't be long until he's recording a jingle for McDonald's... it is, after all, the American way.