Chris Rock is one of the funniest people on the planet. He’s not arrogant about it and is quick to point to the comedy icons who influenced him—from Richard Pryor to Eddie Murphy. But Rock, 49, has been around long enough now to have a major impact on the comic stylings of the next generation of stand-ups. In Top Five, out Dec. 12, the hilarious romantic comedy that riffs on his own life as a comedian and movie star, he filled out the cast with his funniest friends, some of whom grew up idolizing Rock.
“It’s a dream come true,” Saturday Night Live‘s Michael Che says in an exclusive behind-the-scenes clip about the wild anything-goes scene where Rock’s character brings a New York Times reporter (Rosario Dawson) back to his ‘hood. “It really feels like you’re playing with the ’96 Bulls. This is the guy that a lot of us started comedy watching.”
So Chris Rock is Michael Jordan in his prime. And like Jordan, Rock went for the jugular once the camera was rolling. “We got all these hungry, young comedians,” he says. “You know, you’re like in the ring and they’re trying to kill you. And I got to show these boys, like, ‘Heyyy, I’m Chris Motherf–kin’ Rock.'”
Watch the slightly NSFW exclusive below, which includes Rock ragging on Tracy Morgan’s character and a funny bit about what Tupac might be doing today if he was alive.