Black Entertainment : Spike Lee on Self-Financing 'Red Hook Summer'

Discussion in 'Black Entertainment' started by jamesfrmphilly, Jul 2, 2012.

  1. jamesfrmphilly

    jamesfrmphilly going above and beyond PREMIUM MEMBER

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    [​IMG]
    I met the great writer James McBride for breakfast one morning at a coffee shop in New York. We were bemoaning the fact that there’s a low point right now in African-American cinema. We decided to do a movie about a young suburban black kid from Atlanta who’s sent to the Red Hook projects in Brooklyn to spend a summer with a grandfather he’s never met.
    From the get-go, I knew it would be self-financed. I never went to the studios. Hollywood is really superhero land now. It’s harder to make adult films today without people flying, unless you’re a select few: Spielberg, James Cameron, Clint Eastwood, George Lucas. I couldn’t get them to fund a sequel to Inside Man, my most successful film ever. If that wasn’t a signal, then I don’t know what is. I refused to go through the frustration of knocking on steel doors, hat in hand like Oliver Twist, saying “Please sir, can you make this film?”
    With Red Hook Summer, we had 18 days of shooting. A third of my crew were my students at New York University—who got paid. I know actors. One of the things I have in my hip pocket is I can attract grade-A talent. I’m always good at keeping on budget. What’s changed isn’t so much the cost of making a film as marketing it.
    If I had thought this all the way through, I would have known that not only was Hollywood not going to finance this film, but it also wasn’t going to distribute this motherf- -ker, either. After it showed at Sundance, I realized it would have to be self-distributed. Going into our screening at Sundance, I knew it wouldn’t be a finished product. We’ve [since] tightened the story. Film is an evolving thing. I’m working with Variance Films; we’re still going to be in all the top markets in August, [but] let’s just say you’re not going to see any commercials on TV during the Olympics.
    I don’t think Hollywood understands diversity. The sports world is 50 years ahead. There’s a large audience of people of color who aren’t being thought of. But anytime someone who’s African-American becomes huge, people say they’re not black anymore: “Michael Jackson’s not black, he’s universal. Will Smith, he’s not black.” We’ve been having these debates for years. — As told to Diane Brady



    http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2012-06-28/spike-lee-on-self-financing-red-hook-summer
     
  2. Knowledge Seed

    Knowledge Seed Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    I'm glad Spike Lee was able to finance his own movie. It is commendable of him to do that. The only question now is, will he and others like him do the same for the next generation?
     
  3. Khasm13

    Khasm13 STAFF STAFF

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    white people hate spike lee...
    i hope that he can set up some type of guild to promote minorites
    getting into making movies...its so much garbage out there....

    i think the first horror movie i saw where the black person didnt die
    was one of those halloweens with dudley from different strokes up in it....
    he jetted on them fools when jason came around....lol

    one love
    khasm
     
  4. jamesfrmphilly

    jamesfrmphilly going above and beyond PREMIUM MEMBER

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    we need a neo chittlin circuit where we can distribute our own stuff...
     
  5. Knowledge Seed

    Knowledge Seed Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    I don't think we need to reinvent the wheel. We really don't need to start a black version of anything that white people do. We can just buy what they have already started and profit from it ourselves. Wall Street has done this for decades. Reginald Lewis and J Bruce Llewellyn were the masters of Leveraged Buyouts. Neither one was rich when they got started but they both ended up leaving huge nest eggs for their families. Why can't more black folks do that?
     
  6. jamesfrmphilly

    jamesfrmphilly going above and beyond PREMIUM MEMBER

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    didn't lewis leave it to a Philippino woman?
     
  7. Knowledge Seed

    Knowledge Seed Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Her, their daughters and his brother.
     
  8. MsVeraisblessed

    MsVeraisblessed Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    I saw the trailer of this movie on another forum...i already like it.. Just cant wait to see it when it comes out. I don't care if isn't on teh big movie screen. i will buy the dvd itself. I have always admired spike lee and his creative thots..
     
  9. Gorilla

    Gorilla Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    They call it the Internet. I heard it's a series of tubes. Seriously, this could be distributed direct to consumer but a lot of folks don't want to hear that.
     
  10. Knowledge Seed

    Knowledge Seed Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Like Awkward Black Girl?
     
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