Ice Cube is honoring the late John Witherspoon as he celebrates the 20th anniversary of Next Friday.
In an Instagram post, Cube shared a photo of Witherspoon in character as Willie Jones with the caption, “20 years since Next Friday. Miss you Pops.”
Last October, Witherspoon suddenly passed away from a heart attack at his Los Angeles home.
During Witherspoon’s funeral, Cube delivered an emotional eulogy and revealed why he wanted Witherspoon to play his father in the original Friday movie.
“The reason I wanted him to play my father is because he reminds me of my real father, but my real father isn’t as funny,” he said. “He reminded me of my real father and I knew if we got John Witherspoon — this is before we decided to get Chris Tucker — the movie would be funny no matter who else we got in it.”
He continued, “When he said yeah, it was one of the happiest moments, we knew we had anchor. We knew we had somebody who was 10 times funnier than us.”
He also spoke on why Last Friday, the fourth installment in the franchise, wasn’t in production yet. Last May, Cube said that the script was done and that Witherspoon was on board with reviving his role.
“I really apologize to my friend for not getting the next Friday movie made,” he said. “It’s not my fault. Some dumbass people in Hollywood at New Line Cinema, if you wanna … you can email Toby Emmerich and Richard Brener if you feel like I feel. Yeah, you punks had two scripts and you didn’t wanna do them. That’s the real. We were tryin’ to make that movie for years and we couldn’t get it done. We got the other three and we got our memories.”
The fate of Last Friday has yet to be determined.