Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
New NSFW, Extremely Graphic, Adults-Only Poster For Gaspar Noe's 'Love' New NSFW, Extremely Graphic, Adults-Only Poster For Gaspar Noe's 'Love' First Official Look: Jared Leto As The Joker In 'Suicide Squad' First Official Look: Jared Leto As The Joker In 'Suicide Squad' Joss Whedon Says He Earned More Making 'Dr. Horrible' Than 'The Avengers,' Weighs In On Marvel Vs. DC Joss Whedon Says He Earned More Making 'Dr. Horrible' Than 'The Avengers,' Weighs In On Marvel Vs. DC Tom Hardy Met Mel Gibson And Made Him A Bracelet, Says Michael Fassbender Was "The Sh*t" In School Tom Hardy Met Mel Gibson And Made Him A Bracelet, Says Michael Fassbender Was "The Sh*t" In School Native Actors Walk Off Set Of Adam Sandler's 'Ridiculous 6' Over Disrespectful, Insulting Script Native Actors Walk Off Set Of Adam Sandler's 'Ridiculous 6' Over Disrespectful, Insulting Script Watch: Johnny Depp Rages As Whitey Bulger In First Trailer For Gangster Tale 'Black Mass' Watch: Johnny Depp Rages As Whitey Bulger In First Trailer For Gangster Tale 'Black Mass' Gaspar Noe's 3D 'Love' And More Added To Cannes Film Festival Lineup Gaspar Noe's 3D 'Love' And More Added To Cannes Film Festival Lineup First Look: Johnny Depp Goes Gangster In As Whitey Bulger In 'Black Mass' First Look: Johnny Depp Goes Gangster In As Whitey Bulger In 'Black Mass' Watch: Tom Hanks, Leonardo DiCaprio, Anne Hathaway, Michael Fassbender And More Talk The Art Of Acting Watch: Tom Hanks, Leonardo DiCaprio, Anne Hathaway, Michael Fassbender And More Talk The Art Of Acting Review: Marvel’s ‘Avengers: Age Of Ultron’ Starring Robert Downey Jr. Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson & More Review: Marvel’s ‘Avengers: Age Of Ultron’ Starring Robert Downey Jr. Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson & More Watch: Quentin Tarantino, David Fincher, Christopher Nolan, And More Talk The Art Of Filmmaking Watch: Quentin Tarantino, David Fincher, Christopher Nolan, And More Talk The Art Of Filmmaking Christopher Nolan's Favorite Sequence From His Movies Is The Airplane Kidnapping Scene From 'The Dark Knight Rises' Christopher Nolan's Favorite Sequence From His Movies Is The Airplane Kidnapping Scene From 'The Dark Knight Rises' Joss Whedon Calls Edgar Wright's 'Ant-Man' "The Best Script Marvel Ever Had," Warns Of Serialized Moviemaking Joss Whedon Calls Edgar Wright's 'Ant-Man' "The Best Script Marvel Ever Had," Warns Of Serialized Moviemaking The 41 Most Anticipated Movies Of Summer 2015 The 41 Most Anticipated Movies Of Summer 2015 Watch: First Teaser For 'Star Wars: Rogue One,' Plot Details Confirmed Watch: First Teaser For 'Star Wars: Rogue One,' Plot Details Confirmed The 25 Best Films Of 2015 We've Already Seen The 25 Best Films Of 2015 We've Already Seen Best Of 2014: The 15 Best Movie Soundtracks Of 2014 Best Of 2014: The 15 Best Movie Soundtracks Of 2014 The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki

Spike Lee Would Love To Make A Musical With Prince Or Kanye West; 'Red Hook Summer' Aiming For Summer Release

Photo of Kevin Jagernauth By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist January 20, 2012 at 5:42PM

It says something about the state of film financing today that Spike Lee had to pay out of pocket himself for his upcoming "Red Hook Summer." But it also makes its premiere at the Sundance Film Festival all the more fitting, at an event where big stars tend to take to center stage, the filmmaker is arriving with a movie starring a cast nearly entirely made of unknowns, telling exactly the sort of story Hollywood just doesn't make. And Lee is well aware that the people who control the money, just aren't interested in black characters or stories.
3
Red Hook Summer Spike Lee On Set

It says something about the state of film financing today that Spike Lee had to pay out of pocket himself for his upcoming "Red Hook Summer." But it also makes its premiere at the Sundance Film Festival all the more fitting, at an event where big stars tend to take to center stage, the filmmaker is arriving with a movie starring a cast nearly entirely made of unknowns, telling exactly the sort of story Hollywood just doesn't make. And Lee is well aware that the people who control the money, just aren't interested in black characters or stories.

"Look, take away the big stars -- Will Smith and Denzel [Washington] -- and look at the people who have a greenlight vote. Where are the people of color? That's what it comes down to. How many people, when they have those meetings and vote on what movies get made, how many people of color are in those meetings? That's not to say that's the only way to get a film made, but you're talking about Hollywood specifically here. And if you want to get a Hollywood film made, it has to get greenlit," Lee told Risky Business, when asked about opportunities for black filmmakers. "And I want someone to tell me: Who is a person of color who has a greenlight vote in this industry today?"

And don't ask him to explain how "The Help" managed to take a civil rights story and spin it into a mainstream succes. "OK, let me ask you a question: Why did 'Driving Miss Daisy' win best picture in 1989? That's my answer," he says.

But Lee did what he had to do get "Red Hook Summer" made, with the production coming in under $1 million and shot on a lean eighteen day schedule. The story centers around a young boy from Atlanta who heads to the titular neighborhood to spend the summer with his grandfather, who he's never met. Early word is that the film takes a very dramatic turn in the last act, possibly as incendiary as Mookie's (who also makes an apperance) garbage can through Sal's window in "Do The Right Thing." Lee, however, is keeping his lips sealed for now, but he wants to make sure audiences who aren't in Park City don't have to wait too long see it, and he wants it to hit theaters, appropriately, next summer.

"That's my number-one intention," he told IndieWire. "It's why we've been working so hard to get it ready for Sundance, because we want to sell it here, which will give us enough time to set up for a summer release."

But despite the increasing difficulty to get films made -- "We haven't had to resort to Kickstarter. We haven't yet. And hopefully we won't," he told the trade -- he still remains optimistic for the future, with certainly has some big ambitions. Asked about a project he'd like to do some day, he tells, Risky Business, "I'd love to do a musical with Prince, Stevie Wonder or Kanye [West]. That wouldn't all be one movie! They're my dream collaborators."

And don't think he's a sourpuss for movies either, as he retains his enthusiasm for a diverse array or work.. " 'Shame' is a great film; it's my favorite film of the year," he said adding, "I loved 'Attack the Block'; it's a British indie film starring John Boyega, who is also the lead in this pilot I shot for HBO: 'The Brick,' with Doug Ellin from 'Entourage.' " 

We'd be eager to see that series, but for now, our eyes on "Red Hook Summer" which premieres this weekend at Sundance.

This article is related to: Spike Lee, Red Hook Summer


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates