Kanye West's Abandoned HBO Pilot Surfaces Online in Full: Watch

'A Little Inappropriate' was ultimately deemed "too hardcore" by network execs

BY Calum SlingerlandPublished Jun 19, 2023

"A little inappropriate" would be a generous way to characterize the events of Kanye West's last calendar year, but long before the hate speech and flailing presidential campaigns, the artist was looking to line up a comedy series with HBO — the pilot of which has now surfaced online in full.

The 27-minute test episode of West's long buzzed-about HBO show, which was rumoured to be titled A Little Inappropriate, began making the rounds online over the weekend, and you can view it below.

One uploader, who shared the video "so it doesn't become 'lost media' again," claims to have found the pilot uploaded to a Vimeo account belonging to Larry Charles — the director of HBO's Larry David-led series Curb Your Enthusiasm — prior to the account changing viewing settings to private.

Charles had been attached as executive producer of the show, which was first announced for development in 2007. Said to be a Curb-styled look at West's life, the project was shelved indefinitely the following year. At the time, Charles shared, "It was really good, but again I think it was too hardcore for HBO…People gave it a very good response and it seems to be on the shelf right now. The management has shifted at HBO so we're waiting to see."

As previously reported, a four-minute reel of unused footage from the show uploaded in 2010 appeared online in 2013, and the complete pilot now surfaces almost a decade later.

In the episode, West agrees to visit a terminal child on behalf of the Make-A-Wish foundation, only to become anxious about the visit after eating "smelly" takeout food on the car ride over. After sending K.C. — "Kanye's Cousin," played by actor and comedian Wyatt Cenac — to get some breath mints, West fully zips up his BAPE Tiger designer hoodie to meet the child.

Cenac previously spoke with Vulture about the pilot in 2013, after a surprise screening he gave an audience at one of his comedy shows. In that interview, he noted how West had hired him to give private improv lessons, looked to get friend Tom Cruise a role as himself, and how he initially submitted an hour-long cut of the pilot to HBO despite the network requesting one at a 30-minute runtime.

"It was me, Kanye, and [his road manager] Don all doing improv together with no audience, no feedback, and they never wanted to get off the couch. So imagine Whose Line Is It Anyway? but, like, in a car," Cenac shared of those lessons. "Kanye knew he wasn't a good improviser. He'd read something that Seinfeld said about surrounding himself with better talent and that he would rise to the occasion. And so that was his hope."

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