Hustlers, a film starring Jennifer Lopez and Cardi B was inspired by a New York Magazine article and details the rise and fall of strip club employees turned who turned their job into a business at the expense of their Wall Street clients.
Meet Samantha Barbash, the muse of the film.
Barbash checked in with me on the Scoop B Radio Podcast and discussed Jennifer Lopez and Cardi B’s character in the Hustlers film. She tells me that she thought Cardi B could have played a better version of her in the film.
Also on the Scoop B Radio Podcast, we discussed her book, Underscore which is slated to release in October. The book zeroes in on the high end rooms of upscale Manhattan strip clubs. We also discuss other business ventures like her spa, Perfect Silhouette in New York City.
Check out a snippet from our Q&A below:
Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson: Sources say you walked out of the theater when watching the movie Hustlers.
Samantha Barbash: Yeah I did and for several reasons. I’m looking at this movie thinking: ‘wow, this is nothing like my story.’ And of course Hollywood does have to exaggerate somethings, make it a little more desirable to watch for viewers. But now I’m realizing they’re not paying me or even giving me the rights to this story and they’re making millions and millions off of it. Jennifer is even a producer on the project! They defamed me as a mother, they defamed my character, and yeah I walked out. I was disgusted, actually. I’m not going to make away from her acting skills, her beauty, she’s doing her thing. But they’re would be no story without me.
Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson: As a person who watched the movie, I would imagine that Cardi B being a stripper or someone having experience in adult entertainment, she’d have more of a role and would know where you’re coming from. What say you?
Samantha Barbash: Yes, i totally agree. It’s funny how they put her in there like that. I even told the producers, and this is no disrespect to Jennifer at all, she’s a great actress. But being that Cardi was actually a stripper, while she isn’t an actress, she would’ve played a better me because she actually was a stripper and reminds me of me. She lived that life and she’s the real deal. She doesn’t need acting skills to be herself. I think she would’ve gave a better me.
Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson: If you would give an actual percentage, meaning 1-100%, of how accurate the movie was compared to your life, what would you give it?
Samantha Barbash: 87% was non-factual.
Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson: So what exactly was true?
Samantha Barbash: The Christmas party. I used to do that with my friends. But I did not give them a chinchilla. I gave them Christian Louboutin shoes. The locker room parts, where the girls are talking about everyday life and issues, with their boyfriends and husbands. How the guy had his hand out in the strip club, EVERYONE has their hand out in the strip club. It’s a male world, females don’t have any say. But everything else wasn’t real. There was no issue with my co-worker Roslyn, nothing bad to say about her. She and I worked together for 5 months, I’ve been in the business on and off for 17 years.
Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson: When I watched the movie, JLO was sitting on the roof with her chinchilla on and she wrapped her chinchilla around the other girl. Did you have one?
Samantha Barbash: I did have one, but I never wrapped Roselyn in it. And to be honest, I didn’t have to teach Roslyn, she was already a hustler in the game. So I don’t know why Roslyn went on 20/20 and said, I think she said I was the CEO and she was the CFO. I don’t know what that is about. We were equal partners, but at the end of the day, she just didn’t have my caliber of clientele. I had fortune 500 plus a celebrity list, she didn’t have that. But we worked equally, she didn’t work under me. I was never the CEO, she likes to help people because she was the first one to take a plea in the court.
Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson: This kind of feels like Tekashi 69
Samantha Barbash: Ummm yeah. I mean she went on 20/20 she ind of did this to herself. Look, at the end of the day, I’m not gonna go against her. She’s a mother, just like I was, and her daughter was very young at the time. So I obviously understand, but the case was built upon her. Nobody knows this, but they didn’t want us, they wanted her, they always wanted her to take a plea. But I wasn’t going to go against the girls at all, I was going against the club. We didn’t run a credit card scam, the clubs did, and that’s what got me in trouble. The clubs handled all the cards, we didn’t.