Spike Lee
FameRank: 10

"Shelton Jackson "Spike" Lee" is an American film director, producer, writer, and actor. His production company, 40 Acres and a Mule Filmworks, has produced over 35 films since 1983.

Lee's movies have examined race relations, colorism in the black community, the role of media in contemporary life, urban crime and poverty, and other political issues. Lee has received two Academy Award nominations and won numerous other awards, including an Emmy Award as well as the 2013 The Dorothy and Lillian Gish Prize/Gish Prize "for his brilliance and unwavering courage in using film to challenge conventional thinking."

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I collect names for characters. Names are valuable; they can be your first source of insight into a character.

Too many people are being bowled over by Bush and Tony Blair in Britain. It's ludicrous to expect the whole world to follow what they want.

[To be fair, he did convert to Islam in prison and allegedly read the great works of Western literature. And though he failed to obtain his high school equivalency degree while spending three years behind bars, there were larger lessons to absorb at the Indiana Youth Center.] You hope he's learned something, ... I think eventually he'll speak out against abuse to women.

It is really important that young people find something that they want to do and pursue it with passion. I'm very passionate about filmmaking. It's what I love to do.

Racism is when you have laws set up, systematically put in a way to keep people from advancing, to stop the advancement of a people. Black people have never had the power to enforce racism, and so this is something that white America is going to have to work out themselves. If they decide they want to stop it, curtail it, or to do the right thing... then it will be done, but not until then.

I ain't Martin Luther King. I don't need a dream. I have a plan.

Critics like to build you up, tear you down, and then, if you're lucky, build you up again.

People could not believe, especially the residents of the Ninth Ward, that there wasn't hanky-panky in the flooding.

Our greatness, our talent has never been the question. It's been a matter of grappling for control over what we do.