In the 1988 film, a crotchety old man (played by Arsenio Hall) said, "His momma call him Clay, I'mma call him Clay," referring to Cassius Clay changing his name to Muhammad Ali. The Jenner-referencing meme featured the same old guy saying, "His momma named him Bruce, I'mma call him Bruce."
Caitlyn Jenner Revealed: See First Post-Bruce Photo in 'Vanity Fair'
After some backlash and media coverage (including on Billboard), the legendary producer explained himself over a series of tweets Tuesday (June 2). According to Timb, he was only sharing the meme because he thought it was funny -- not because he endorsed the actual sentiment. He was careful to point out that he didn't create the meme and had previously stated he has "nothing against" Jenner. Read his explanation below.
It's fair to point out that while former Nickelodeon star/singer-songwriter Drake Bell posted an arguably transphobic tweet ("Sorry, still calling you Bruce") that he soon deleted, Timbaland shared an arguably transphobic meme -- perhaps a small distinction to some, but one Timb would like you to note.