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An elevator fight exposed Beyoncé’s personal life

The fight between her sister and husband became a major news story

The 59th GRAMMY Awards - Roaming Show
Solange, Beyoncé and Jay-Z at the 2017 Grammys
Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for NARAS
Alex Abad-Santos is a senior correspondent who explains what society obsesses over, from Marvel and movies to fitness and skin care. He came to Vox in 2014. Prior to that, he worked at the Atlantic.

On May 5, 2014, Beyoncé; her younger sister, Solange Knowles, who is also a singer; and Jay Z attended a Met Ball after-party at New York City’s Standard Hotel together. All three and a bodyguard entered an elevator together, and for an unknown reason, Solange physically attacked Jay Z. The reason we know this happened is because TMZ obtained leaked security footage from the hotel elevator that night:

Solange attacking Jay in an elevator.

During the scuffle, Beyoncé did not get involved and mostly stared straight ahead as her bodyguard tried to hold Solange back:

Beyonce stays calm during the fight.

A statement on behalf of the Knowles and Carters was released three days after the video leaked. ”Jay and Solange each assume their share of responsibility for what has occurred. They both acknowledge their role in this private matter that has played out in the public,” the statement read.

Beyoncé didn’t personally address this until August, when she released the remix to her song “Flawless.” She blamed the elevator brawl on the amount of money she and Jay were worth:

”We escalatin’, up in this bitch like elevators,” she sang. “Of course sometimes shit goes down when there’s a billion dollars on an elevator.”

Were the lyrics accurate? Check the chart below:

Beyonce, Jay, and Solange’s net worth.

It is unclear whether Beyoncé’s occupational hazard theorem holds up. There have presumably been many times when billionaires such as Bill Gates or Warren Buffett have gotten into elevators, but security footage of those instances has not been leaked to TMZ.