All Articles Tagged "spike lee"

Does Kelly Rowland Have Her Eye On A Donna Summer Role?

September 28th, 2014 - By Courtney Whitaker
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WENN

WENN

Kelly Rowland has the rumor mill spinning this morning. After posting a picture of herself channeling Donna Summer’s signature look, multiple outlets are claiming that Rowland is campaigning for a role as Donna Summer.

The reports could be true thanks to a new Spike Lee movie were Donna is a character. The biopic, Spinning Gold is about Casablanca Records founder Neil Bogart. Bogart helped launch a number of musical acts including Kiss, Joan Jett and of course, Donna Summer.

Justin Timberlake is already signed on to play Bogart. What do you think? Could Kelly play Donna Summer?

NYPD Won’t Do The Right Thing: Spike Lee Claims Eric Garner Is A Modern Day Radio Raheem

July 25th, 2014 - By Madame Noire
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YouTube

YouTube

 

From BlackVoices 

After a disturbing video of New York resident Eric Garner being placed in a chokeholdand restrained by police went viral, critics have publicly spoken out against theNYPD’s repeated examples of police brutality and use of excessive force particularly in inner city communities. On the video, Garner, an asthmatic and father of six who family and friends described as a “gentle giant,” is seen telling cops that he can’t breath and appears unresponsive moments later. His cause of death is reportedly “pending further studies.”

The chilling video not only provoked anger, but also possessed a troubling resemblance to a scene out of a movie — to be specific, Spike Lee’s “Do the Right Thing.” Garner’s apparent death by chokehold harkens back to the scene in Lee’s film where character Radio Raheem is choked to death by police, reiterating how the director’s art truly imitates life.

Read more about Spike Lee and the Eric Garner case at BlackVoices.com 

 

“It Was Just Totally Stupid” Spike Lee Talks Rape Scene In “She’s Gotta Have It”

May 15th, 2014 - By Veronica Wells
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Source: 40 Acres & A Mule Filmworks

Source: 40 Acres & A Mule Filmworks

Hollywood loves to paint Spike Lee as the angry, black man director. But in this interview with Deadline, he proves to be quite introspective. He spoke about everything from fighting the studios to make Malcolm X to racist film critics who believed and wrote about their theories that Do The Right Thing would incite race riots in theaters across the country. But one of the most poignant moments of the interview,came at the very end when the interviewer asked him about his regrets.

Initially Lee said he didn’t have any and then he retracted his statement.

Lee: My wife has told me on occasion that I can be my own worst enemy, and she is a smart lady. But I don’t really have any regrets. Check that. You know what my biggest regret is?

DEADLINE: What?

LEE: The rape scene in “She’s Gotta Have It.” If I was able to have any do-overs, that would be it. It was just totally…stupid. I was immature. It made light of rape, and that’s the one thing I would take back. I was immature and I hate that I did not view rape as the vile act that it is. I can promise you, there will be nothing like that in She’s Gotta Have It, the TV show, that’s for sure

If you recall the in the film, Nola Darling, the protagonist, is dating and sleeping with three men. Though she’s open and honest about the predicament, it presents a bit of a problem with her beaus.

One night one of the boyfriends, Jamie comes over. Now, Jamie has told Nola all along that he’s not a fan of the arrangement. Instead of breaking up with her, he comes over to her apartment with the intent to seduce her. He ends up raping her.

The scene has left many audience members and critics feeling everything from uneasy to outraged for decades now, considering it was Lee’s first film. Many felt like Lee was sending the message that since Nola was sleeping with three men simultaneously that she was loose and somehow deserved this type of treatment.

I’m happy to know that after 30 years and a lot more maturity, Lee sees the error in his ways. And don’t think I say this as a rationalization. We can all agree he was wrong. The thing is though, the topic of rape is just now, like within the last three years, making its way to mainstream, public discussions. Today, there is still a lot of ignorance about what constitutes rape, so I can imagine that the climate thirty years ago was far worse. Either way, it’s good that Lee acknowledged this so future audiences and future filmmakers don’t look at this movie and think the type of message he sent back then was ok.

What do you think about Spike Lee’s comments to Deadline? Were you bothered by the rape scene in She’s Gotta Have It?

 

Spike Lee Adapting “She’s Gotta Have It” Into TV Series For Showtime

May 6th, 2014 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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Island Pictures

Island Pictures

I’m quite excited about this as both a Spike Lee fan, and a HUGE fan of She’s Gotta Have It, which is on my DVD shelf right now.

According to Deadline, Spike Lee has been given the green light to bring She’s Gotta Have It to Showtime as a half-hour series. Of course, Lee will be in the director’s chair, and he will also write the show. According to the report, the series will take a modern look at the characters of Nola Darling and her love interests. Deadline also says that the project “will explore Lee’s unique and provocative points of view about race, gender, sexuality, relationships, and the gentrification in Brooklyn.” 

Lee has been very outspoken about his disdain for all the gentrification going on in Brooklyn, saying this (as well as a lot of other thought-provoking things) during a talk at the Pratt Institute for Black History Month:

“I mean, they just move in the neighborhood. You just can’t come in the neighborhood. I’m for democracy and letting everybody live but you gotta have some respect. You can’t just come in when people have a culture that’s been laid down for generations and you come in and now sh*t gotta change because you’re here? Get the f**k outta here. Can’t do that!”

With that in mind, I’m excited to see how he’ll tackle this very real issue for TV. SGHI was released in 1986, and has had a big cultural impact. While it might not be as recognized and culturally significant as say, Lee’s Do The Right Thing, it still opened doors for young black filmmakers in the late ’80s and onward who were looking to discuss aspects of black life that aren’t generally documented. Plus, it was Lee’s first feature length film, and it was arguably ahead of its time.

And how can you not love a movie that introduced us to the character, Mars Blackmon (“Please, baby, please, baby, baby, baby please!”)?

Are you interested in checking out this adaptation for TV? Talk about it below.

 

Livin’ Large! 10 Celebs Who Are Selling Their Extravagant Homes

March 19th, 2014 - By Kimberly Gedeon
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Shutterstock

Shutterstock

Maybe it’s too big? Or perhaps they want something new? Who knows! But for some reason or another, a slew of celebrities are currently selling their lavish homes as they eye new digs that are more befitting of their needs.

In any case, the wealthy elite can’t wait to get their hands on these luxury estates — they can easily impress their snooty rich colleagues by adding “Hey guess what? [Insert impressive name] lived here!” Let’s take a look at the lavish celebrity homes that are currently up for grabs.

Bend Down And Gimme A Kiss: 11 Famous Folks Who Are Much Shorter Than Their Spouses

March 4th, 2014 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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How important is height to you when looking for a partner? In the case of these famous folks, it wasn’t a big deal. Here are 11 fabulous couples (still together by the way) who just so happen to have major height differences between them. Hey, it’s all about the love anyway, right?

Guillermo Proano/WENN.com

Guillermo Proano/WENN.com

Kevin Hart and Eniko Parrish

What Kevin Hart lacks in height, he makes up for in humor, and that’s probably part of the reason why his statuesque girlfriend, Eniko Parrish, is in love with him. At 5’4″, he’s shorter than most of the folks he encounters, but his confidence distracts from all that.

Where Are They Now? The Cast Of “Do the Right Thing”

March 3rd, 2014 - By Deron Dalton
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Cast of "Do The Right Thing" reunites

Do the Right Thing is one of the greatest black films and one of the greatest films of all time, period. With Spike Lee’s recent “rant” backed by facts about gentrification in New York City — prompting vandalization, it has us thinking about well, doing the right thing — a movie set on a scorching hot summer day in Brooklyn where the heat isn’t the only thing boiling, but racial tension.

Not only that, this year is the film’s 25th anniversary and let’s celebrate the film, which has been entered into the US Library of Congress — calling the film culturally significant. Also, it’s preserved in the National Film Registry.

Some of the cast recently reunited for Entertainment Weekly, but where are they now? The film definitely had an ensemble cast, so click through and find out what these stars are up to these days.

Anthony Mackie: Spike Lee Is Practicing ‘Reverse Gentrification’ By Leaving Brooklyn For The Upper East Side

March 3rd, 2014 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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Source: WENN

Source: WENN

We told you last week about the impromptu speech Spike Lee gave during an event for Black History Month at the Pratt Institute recently. When a man tried to ask Lee if he ever thought about the positive aspects of gentrification, Lee shut him all the way down with some deep points.

Then comes the motherf**kin’ Christopher Columbus Syndrome. You can’t discover this! We been here. You just can’t come and bogart. There were brothers playing motherf**kin’ African drums in Mount Morris Park for 40 years and now they can’t do it anymore because the new inhabitants said the drums are loud. My father’s a great jazz musician. He bought a house in nineteen-motherf**kin’-sixty-eight, and the motherf**kin’ people moved in last year and called the cops on my father. He’s not — he doesn’t even play electric bass! It’s acoustic! We bought the motherf**kin’ house in nineteen-sixty-motherf**kin’-eight and now you call the cops? In 2013? Get the f**k outta here!

You can check out the full speech here. But one person who doesn’t really agree with Lee is actor Anthony Mackie. Mackie, who once starred in Lee’s film, She Hate Me, said in an interview with TheGrio that Lee’s opinions on gentrification are interesting considering the fact that the director left Brooklyn a long time ago. He feels that if Lee really wanted to help, he would have invested in businesses in Brooklyn that create more opportunities for the borough’s residents.

Chris Witherspoon: Spike Lee is in the media and in the press talking about gentrification in Brooklyn. You own a bar in Brooklyn, right?

Anthony Mackie: Spike Lee don’t live in Brooklyn.

Witherspoon: Okay, he’s from Brooklyn though. His heart is Brooklyn.

Mackie: So why did he leave Brooklyn?

Weatherspoon: I don’t know. These things I have to ask Spike when I see him again. What’s your take on his issues with gentrification? Do you think it’s a good thing for places like Brooklyn and New York City?

Mackie: I don’t know. I live in Brooklyn. My address is in Brooklyn. I have two restaurants in Brooklyn, and I don’t have a problem with the gentrification. It’s a very good thing. I wouldn’t call it gentrification. The people that want to live in Brooklyn, move to Brooklyn. I mean, New York is going through this huge transition where the people who used to live in Manhattan now live in Brooklyn. The people who used to live in Brooklyn, now live in Queens, the Bronx, and Staten Island. The people who used to live in Queens, the Bronx and Staten Island are just being displaced. So I wouldn’t call it gentrification. Because it’s the same income level in Brooklyn, it’s just a different shade of people. Some people might say when Spike moved to Manhattan, that was a type of reverse gentrification. Possibly. As your tax brackets changes, I guess your zip code changes.

I think Mackie makes some points that people hadn’t really thought about. I’m sure using a hefty income to buy homes and apartments in Brooklyn and trying to keep the rent low for residents would have helped big time, as opposed to picking up and moving to the wealthy side of town. But in Lee’s defense, his production studio, 40 Acres and A Mule, is in Fort Greene, Brooklyn.

I would also say that the income has changed with the people who have come in. People are being forced out of their homes specifically to make way for those who can afford to pay much higher rent, so I wouldn’t say that gentrification is necessarily a “very good thing.” But Mackie’s points also beg the question, one that I’ve discussed with people on and off over the years, of whether or not it’s an issue when famous people decide to  leave behind places they grew up in or try to rep the most once they can afford to (a la, J Lo and her Jenny From the Block shtick). What do you think?

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“Motherf**kin’ Christopher Columbus Syndrome”: Spike Lee Goes On Epic Rant Against Gentrification

February 26th, 2014 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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To have a conversation about gentrification is to have a very complex and sometimes ugly discussion on the benefits and negative impact of it all. One morning, literally at the crack of dawn as I made my way from Crown Heights all the way to Harlem for church, at about 6:30 a.m., a young black man and woman were having the loudest conversation ever about gentrification. The man was very riled up: “I just don’t understand why things have to be turned upside down because THEY moved in!”

As he said “they,” this young man literally pointed at a white woman sitting on the train, minding her business.

“I’ll keep it real, it’s cool that the neighborhoods get cleaned up, but when you’re forcing black people who were there before you out, it’s f**ked up! It’s not right.”

It was literally too early in the morning for me to take a 45 minute train ride uptown with someone yelling at the top of his lungs, so after two stops, I moved to a different car. He had some good points, but hey, I was on the train for Jesus, not for a speech.

But I will agree, while there are benefits to gentrification, there are quite a few negatives. A recent Gothamist article told the story of quite a few people paying low rent for years who were forcibly moved from their apartments by landlords (I’m talking axes taken to water heaters on purpose) who then cleaned the places up and jacked up the rent for white folks looking to move into Brooklyn or the Bronx or Harlem, and could afford it. It’s stuff like that, which gets people pissed off, and it’s stuff like that, which gets Spike Lee to dole out a 7-minute rant about “motherf**king hipsters” taking over places, which black people have called home.

During a speech for Black History Month at the Pratt Institute on Tuesday, an audience member tried to suggest that gentrification helps black people with wealth creation. Lee wasn’t having it. Here are a few highlights from the 7-minute speech against gentrification in New York City (courtesy of NY Mag):

Here’s the thing: I grew up here in Fort Greene. I grew up here in New York. It’s changed. And why does it take an influx of white New Yorkers in the south Bronx, in Harlem, in Bed Stuy, in Crown Heights for the facilities to get better? The garbage wasn’t picked up every motherf**kin’ day when I was living in 165 Washington Park. P.S. 20 was not good. P.S. 11. Rothschild 294. The police weren’t around. When you see white mothers pushing their babies in strollers, three o’clock in the morning on 125th Street, that must tell you something.

Then comes the motherf**kin’ Christopher Columbus Syndrome. You can’t discover this! We been here. You just can’t come and bogart. There were brothers playing motherf**kin’ African drums in Mount Morris Park for 40 years and now they can’t do it anymore because the new inhabitants said the drums are loud. My father’s a great jazz musician. He bought a house in nineteen-motherf**kin’-sixty-eight, and the motherf**kin’ people moved in last year and called the cops on my father. He’s not — he doesn’t even play electric bass! It’s acoustic! We bought the motherf**kin’ house in nineteen-sixty-motherf**kin’-eight and now you call the cops? In 2013? Get the f**k outta here!

Nah. You can’t do that. You can’t just come in the neighborhood and start bogarting and say, like you’re motherf**kin’ Columbus and kill off the Native Americans. Or what they do in Brazil, what they did to the indigenous people. You have to come with respect. There’s a code. There’s people.

You can’t just — here’s another thing: When Michael Jackson died they wanted to have a party for him in motherf**kin’ Fort Greene Park and all of a sudden the white people in Fort Greene said, “Wait a minute! We can’t have black people having a party for Michael Jackson to celebrate his life. Who’s coming to the neighborhood? They’re gonna leave lots of garbage.” Garbage? Have you seen Fort Greene Park in the morning? It’s like the motherf**kin’ Westminster Dog Show. There’s 20,000 dogs running around. Whoa. So we had to move it to Prospect Park!

I mean, they just move in the neighborhood. You just can’t come in the neighborhood. I’m for democracy and letting everybody live but you gotta have some respect. You can’t just come in when people have a culture that’s been laid down for generations and you come in and now sh*t gotta change because you’re here? Get the fuck outta here. Can’t do that!

And then! So you’re talking about the people’s property change? But what about the people who are renting? They can’t afford it anymore! You can’t afford it. People want to live in Fort Greene. People wanna live in Clinton Hill. The Lower East Side, they move to Williamsburg, they can’t even afford f**kin’, motherf**kin’ Williamsburg now because of motherf**kin’ hipsters. What do they call Bushwick now? What’s the word? [Audience: East Williamsburg]

That’s another thing: Motherf**kin’… These real estate motherf**kers are changing names! Stuyvestant Heights? 110th to 125th, there’s another name for Harlem. What is it? What? What is it? No, no, not Morningside Heights. There’s a new one. [Audience: SpaHa] What the f**k is that? How you changin’ names?

When I tell you his speech was quite epic, I’m not kidding. Check out the full thing over at NY Mag and share your thoughts.

WAKE UP! Spike Lee Confirms “School Daze” Sequel

February 24th, 2014 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
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"School Daze" Sequel

Spike Lee

 

Last year, the classic Spike Lee joint School Daze turned 25! Given its monumental anniversary, many fans of the film inquired if there would be a sequel. Recently Spike Lee spoke to Black&Sexy TV and confirmed there would a sequel. According to the Rickey Smiley Morning Show, Spike Lee stated:

“I had the script for ‘School Daze.’ But, what people have to understand is that it’s a contemporary version. So it’s the same school, Mission College, 25 years later. Hopefully I can get Laurence Fishburne to play Dap. He’ll be the president now of the school. And we would deal with issues around Historically Black Colleges today.”

Premiering in 1988, School Dazed revolved around young men at the fictional historical black college, Mission College. These men are separated by political and social views while the women in the film focus on skin-color complexes.

According to Lee, the sequel will further shed light on the black greek pledging process and homophobia at historically black colleges.

Which favorite character do you want to return in the School Daze sequel? Check out the School Daze trailer below to refresh your memory!