GOING CLEAR

Isaac Hayes’s Son: Dad Didn’t Quit South Park—Someone Did It for Him

In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Isaac Hayes III suggested that the Church of Scientology made his soul legend father quit South Park—despite the narrative that the singer and actor quit in protest. “Isaac Hayes did not quit South Park; someone quit South Park for him,” the son explained. “What happened was that in January 2006 my dad had a stroke and lost the ability to speak. He really didn’t have that much comprehension, and he had to relearn to play the piano and a lot of different things. He was in no position to resign under his own knowledge. At the time, everybody around my father was involved in Scientology—his assistants, the core group of people. So someone quit South Park on Isaac Hayes’ behalf. We don’t know who.” Hayes infamously left the show following an episode that skewered Scientology, the religion for which he was a devotee. But his son said that there’s no way Hayes took offense at the episode enough to quit: “My father was not that big of a hypocrite to be part of a show that would constantly poke fun at African-American people, Jewish people, gay people—and only quit when it comes to Scientology.” Show co-creator Trey Parker agreed: “We knew in our hearts there was something way more rotten going on.”