American singer, songwriter and actress, Beyonce, and the makers of The Lion King have been accused of plagiarism. Beyonce was accused after shots of her recent Spirit music video appeared on social media over the weekend.
The video allegedly picks some of its visuals from La Maison Noir: The Gift and The Curse, an 18-minute visual album accompanying South African artist Petite Noir’s eponymous 2018 EP.
Addressing the similarity of both videos on Twitter, photographer and filmmaker, Justice Mukheli, described the situation as “ridiculous”.
— Justice Mukheli (@justice_mukheli) July 20, 2019
Petite Noir’s La Maison Noir currently has 1.9 million views on Youtube after its release in 2018 while Beyonce’s Spirit has over 4 million views on Youtube after its release on Friday.
The video clip shows both artists and dancers in similar bright blue or orange clothing striking similar poses. There are scenes which feature Blue Ivy resembling those featuring a child in the African visual artwork while Beyonce is also spotted in a cowrie beaded face veil that resembles some outfits used in “La Maison Noir”.
The “La Maison Noir” video was created to reference the four elements of fire, earth, water and air. It also depicts the formative stages of the musician’s life which were spent moving around before settling in South Africa.
Management of both artists have not reacted to the allegation but the differences are clear and similarities striking. La Maison Noir was shot in the Namib desert and Spirit in the Grand Canyon, Arizona with both depicting an arid, mountainous, windy desert setting.
La Maison Noir was directed by Ilunga and Nembhard while Spirit was directed by British Jake Nava who also directed Beyonce’s Crazy in Love, Flawless, Grown Woman and Partition music videos.
Here are some social media reactions to the alleged plagiarism:
So your mama Beyoncé is about that plagiarism life huh??!! That’s a shame, has all the resources in the world but still gotta copy other folks hard work and creativity? She should’ve just asked her sister and co. For help pic.twitter.com/Xy1Is5HqqF
— Trapallelogram (@gh_Mikie) July 21, 2019
— MissLioness (@Mmabz_Tau) July 23, 2019
The line between homage and plagiarism can get…blurry. Beyonce’s video looks VERY similar to Petit Noir. But she could easily explain it away as homage because she never claimed to come up with a concept.
— Candy’s Hammer
(@ashleighlakieva) July 23, 2019
Omfg this is y’all queen
I can’t even breathe, the beehive is now attacking this brand for calling out the plagiarism, this isn’t the first time Beyoncé does this, truly disappointing pic.twitter.com/WkdwOcQ5lp— rocketnmbr9 (@rocketnmbr9) July 23, 2019
Omfg this is y’all queen
I can’t even breathe, the beehive is now attacking this brand for calling out the plagiarism, this isn’t the first time Beyoncé does this, truly disappointing pic.twitter.com/WkdwOcQ5lp
— rocketnmbr9 (@rocketnmbr9) July 23, 2019
The more I think abt plagiarism claims for Beyonce’s visuals of “Spirit + Bigger” the more I think she had Petite Noir sign an NDA, hence why he is not publicly addressing the topic.
She is paying tribute to his artistry, fully plagiarizing his incredible work and title #TheGiftpic.twitter.com/XsdJeqYCyI
(@IamBayn) July 24, 2019
I honestly thought the Beyoncé/plagiarism thing would be over after a day.
— Res Judy Carter-Knowles (@NonCuratFlex) July 23, 2019
I just knew this Beyonce thing would come out
— Uminathi (@Uminathi11) July 22, 2019
The creative team really fucked Beyoncé over with the plagiarism.
— L. (@Kim_Khandashisa) July 22, 2019