Spike Lee Accepts Honorary Oscar, Blasts Hollywood

Spike Lee

Spike Lee Accepts Honorary Oscar, Blasts Hollywood

It's easier to get a Black POTUS than a Black studio head, director said.

Published November 15, 2015

Spike Lee was awarded an honorary Oscar at the Governor's Awards on Saturday night, and, in typical Spike fashion, he used his acceptance speech to make a statement about the lack of diversity in Hollywood.

After an introduction from Denzel Washington, in which the actor said, "Spike Lee has put more African-Americans to work in this business than anyone else in this business," Lee laid in to the film industry.


"It's easier to be the president of the United States as a Black person than be the head of a studio [or] network," he told the audience of A-listers, which included everyone from Will Smith to Meryl Streep.

The two-time nominee called on studio bosses to "reflect what this country looks like" as he received his award from Washington, Samuel L. Jackson and Wesley Snipes. "Everybody in here probably voted for [Barack] Obama," he said. "But when I go to offices, I see no Black folks except for the brother man at the security who checks my name off the list as I go into the studio. We need to have some serious discussion about diversity and get some flavour up in this."

The veteran filmmaker, whose new joint Chi-Raq drops on December 4, has been nominated for a Best Original Screenplay Oscar for Do the Right Thing in 1990 and for his 1997 documentary 4 Little Girls. The honorary award was his first win from the Academy.

He also recently accepted a pair of "Oscar Edition" Air Jordan VIs.

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BET Exclusive Rewind! Spike Lee Predicts Lupita Nyong'o Will Win an Academy Award in the video below.

(Photo: Jason LaVeris / Getty Images)

Written by Evelyn Diaz


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