The controversial Spike Lee
is at it again -- the legendary filmmaker is known for feuds with 50 Cent
, Clint Eastwood
and Tyler Perry
might be next.
What's strange is that during the press for Inside Man
in 2006, Mr. Lee spoke highly of Tyler Perry
. Maybe after Meet The Browns
and House of Payne
, Spike has a different perspective. Now, Lee says Perry's films and television shows are a minstrel show. Perry has experienced this criticism before, but never from a fellow celebrity in the film world. Here is what the Do The Right Thing
director told Ed Gordon
on Our World with Black Enterprise
, which aired this weekend:
"Each artist should be allowed to pursue their artistic endeavors but I still think there is a lot of stuff out today that is “coonery” and buffoonery. I know it’s making a lot of money and breaking records, but we can do better. … I am a huge basketball fan, and when I watch the games on TNT, I see these two ads for these two shows (Tyler Perry’s "Meet the Browns" and "House of Payne") and I am scratching my head. … We got a Black president and we going back to Mantan Moreland and Sleep ‘n’ Eat?"
"We’ve had this discussion back and forth. When John Singleton [made
"Boyz in the Hood"], people came out to see it. But when he did
"Rosewood," nobody showed up. So a lot of this is on us! You vote with your pocketbook, your wallet. You vote with your time sitting in front of the idiot box, and [Tyler Perry] has a huge audience. We shouldn’t think that Tyler Perry is going to make the same film that I am going to make, or that John Singleton or my cousin Malcolm Lee [would make]. As African Americans, we’re not one monolithic group so there is room for all of that. But at the same time, for me, the imaging is troubling and it harkens back to "Amos n’ Andy.""
Well, I know some folks might be angered by Spike's comments, but he is a cinematic legend and has paved the way for someone like Tyler Perry. Therefore, if he has fair social critiques about his cohorts I think we should all take the time to listen, especially Black consumers.
Are you offended by Spike Lee's comments?