TMZ

Our TV Shows

Got a Tip?

Call TMZ at (888) 847-9869 or Click Here

Spike Lee & John Ridley Do the Riot Thing

12/6/2006 5:28 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF

Ridley and LeeAfter Michael Richards' racist invective at an L.A. comedy club opened a new discussion about race relations in America, Universal Pictures is getting into business with a pair of pragmatists who don't fear a frank discussion of the N-word.

TMZ has learned that director Spike Lee is coming aboard a new film from Imagine Entertainment about the run up to the L.A. riots of 1992, and the aftermath, with a script written by John Ridley ("Three Kings" and "Undercover Brother").

It's been fourteen days since Richards harangue went viral, but over 14 years since a predominantly white jury acquitted four cops who were videotaped beating motorist Rodney King. On parole for a robbery conviction, King led cops on a high speed chase, then finally pulled over. Videotape showed him resisting arrest, with the LAPD tackling, tasering and beating him. The acquittal of the officers proved too much to bear, and it uncorked a spree of looting, arson and murder; 55 people were killed in L.A. on April 29, 1992.

If Ridley's propitiously timed article, entitled, "The Manifesto of Ascendancy for the Modern American Nigger" (now in the December issue of Esquire magazine) is any indication, his script probably won't give L.A. rioters a free pass based on shared skin color.



Viz,

"...That which retards us is the worst of 'us,' those who disdain actual ascendancy gained by way of intellectual expansion and physical toil, who instead value the posture of an 'urban,' a 'street,' a 'real' existence, no matter that such a culture threatens to render them extinct. 'Them' being niggers. I have no qualm about using the word nigger. It is a word. It is in the English lexicon, and no amount of political correctness, no amputation into 'the n-word' -- as if by the castration of a few letters we should then be able to conceptualize its meaning without feeling its sting -- will remove it from reality. So I say this: It's time for ascended blacks to wish niggers good luck. Just as whites may be concerned with the good of all citizens but don't travel their days worrying specifically about the well-being of hillbillies from Appalachia, we need to send niggers on their way."

Lee has already weighed in on the L.A. riots in a previous film, albeit obliquely: The opening credits of his 1992 movie, "Malcolm X," show footage of the Rodney King beating.

More recently, the director has been interested in present-day social justice and race relations, exploring the abandonment of impoverished black New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, as seen in his HBO documentary, "When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts." Interestingly, the subject of black looting was again raised.

In "When the Levees Broke" Lee repeatedly interviews a 42-year-old woman named Phyllis Montana LeBlanc, a resident of N'awlins Lower Ninth Ward. "There were two things I asked Spike when we first met," LeBlanc told Newsweek, "First I asked him, 'Are you going to tell the whole story and make it clear that all black people aren't poor, ignorant looters?' And then I asked if I could cuss." She laughs. "When he said yes to both, I said, 'Hot damn, we've got a deal!'"

Universal didn't offer immediate comment other than to confirm the deal after checking with a spokesman for Lee.

Developing...
46 COMMENTS

No Avatar
31.

whitepower    

If all you n*ggers don't like what is going on, why don't youc carry your sorry black asses back to Africa? Your own people sold your stupid, bug eating asses to white slave traders and if you had not been bought, your stupid asses would still be eating bugs and running around speaking jibberish!!! F*** all you n*ggers and your lazy asses that the whites will always support!

2691 days ago
32.

BigNorm    

I guess my question is who am i blaming???LOL....i said f*** what white people think about us...and that includes brown yellow, blue green , whoever,...that has nothing to do with the
blaming anybody....all that is deflecting energy our way that doesnt have any purpose...somebody pointing out your faults while ignoring theirs is in no position to telll someone else anything.....somebody on here thinks i have homosexual urges because i said kiss my black balls....does that mean i should enlighten him to the fact that i could be mr. f*** you instead so he wouldn't put weird homosexual off on my name....or is mr. kiss my ass better or mr. i don't care what you thnk....cause it all means the same so wherever the homosexual sh*t came from ( last i checked there were females on this site too) you should get that together...i would hope that nobody on here lives a life that is based on the opinions of others because that is a sad and self-expressionless existence.....when you live for others you never find you.....within my community all is not well?.....no sh*t....but the last thing we need is some outside source that has its own issues denigrating people within our race....what we do need is people in our race who have achieved a positive balance and identity to go BACK and teach others...not desert them.....we SHOULD take responsibility for each other because we aren't afforded the luxury of not being able to .....that is why when one person does something we all get looked at funny.....its natural to want to separate from something negative.....but its uplifting to go back and teach that which has lost its way.......societal structure (capitalism) in this nation doesn't cater to that much but this is an issue that is destroying the fabric of the black community....we no longer believe we have a common struggle and now independent betterment is the way supposedly but if that was the case then separation and n*ggers vs. black people debate wouldn't even be an issue so we are in this together unless the black community will assimilate into the american community which in reality has no real identity at all...if anything it is schizophrenic.........we have our own people running from our own....and why??? did God or whoever you believe in run from you when you weren't at your best??? or were you given time to grow???? and some of you who are replying aren't reading....your skimming and biasing.....and as far as reginald "should've ducked " denny f*** him.....and yes you can still kiss these black balls....

2691 days ago
33.

We, are not amused.    

whitepower #30
don't talk with your mouth full of pillow, and make sure you SHAVE your asscrack next time, punk!

2691 days ago
34.

steve    

N*ggers always cut their own throats by rioting nd burning down THEIR OWN NEIGHBORHOODS. Ass-backwards mf's. They don't seem to get it. Mad at the world so we will riot and burn down our own nbeighborhood and then bitch. DMF's.

2690 days ago
35.

Kammy    

I will say it again as I have said it so many times. I have never seen such a bunch of fucking racists. I come on here hoping that maybe today the majority of the people posting comments will have something worth reading to say and again I am disappointed. I agree with the person that posted this blogger continuously touches on racial issues that is sure to get the commentors riled up. So what Rodney King was on parole and he was resisting arrest. I never met a man of any race that wanted to be arrested.

Secondly him being on parole had nothing to do with the way that he was beaten. For him to ask can't we all just get along to me means that although he went through what he went through he didn't want anyone else suffering. But leave it to some asshole to take someone wanting everyone to get along out of context.

People on here are always talking about black people complaining. Yet I've never heard of a white slave. When you endure the injustices that black people faced just because of the skin color that they were born with then you can talk. I do not ask white America to feel sympathy for black people or to try to understand us because that will never happen. I will say that you never know what someone goes through until you walk in their shoes. And to see that some of you on here were breeded with hatred for what you don't understand is truly sad.

2690 days ago
36.

Kammy    

Steve how about you suck a dick, choke on it and hopefully gain some long overdue commonsense. I see you so quickly forget about Jeffrey Daumer who ate people for fun. Or the a**hole Timothy McVeigh. What about the one that claimed to have killed Jon Benet Ramsey just for attention. Scott Peterson that killed his wife and unborn child. I mean lets be serious here who are a true example of the pot calling the kettle black. Educate yourself and think before you post dumb ass comments. It's not the race that commits the crime it is the person that does. So don't make it seem like there are no white people that are ass backwards.

2690 days ago
37.

Had Enough    

Kammy -

Reading your 'logical' points, makes me hope we don't live in the same city. You're justifying a man resisting an arrest as "so what, who wants to go to jail"??? Come on! So with that attitude, so what if a robber(black or white) breaks into your home, steals your valued possessions just because he wants some quick cash. You're right! So, what? And you say that people are always talking about african americans complaining and what was your next sentence....A COMPLAINT!

2690 days ago
38.

Kammy    

First of all I'm not justifying anything. I am a Criminal JUstice Major therefore I know that police can fuck with a person just because and find some screwed up probable cause to prove their case. I stated that because in the above article they made it seem like that was a reason to do what they did to him. Do not miscontrue what I wrote and take my words out of context.

I see how ploice officers can treat people black, white or any other ethnicity.
"On parole for a robbery conviction, King led cops on a high speed chase, then finally pulled over. Videotape showed him resisting arrest, with the LAPD tackling, tasering and beating him." That is why I said who wants to be arrested. If a police officer pulled you over and for whatever reason wanted to place you under arrest I guess you would just put your hands behind you. Many people don't even know their rights as far as what police officers can and can't get away with.

I just didn't agree with that particular statement. Anytime that police do something they find some way to slander the person and get away with it.

2690 days ago
39.

Kammy    

Give me a Break how about you shut the f*** up and stop trying to overanalyze what you read. I AM NOT COMPLAINING. I am stating my thoughts, opinions and how I feel about what I read. You cannot tell me how I feel, what I think or what I meant to say, or what I should say.

People on here are always talking about black people complaining. Yet I've never heard of a white slave. When you endure the injustices that black people faced just because of the skin color that they were born with then you can talk. I do not ask white America to feel sympathy for black people or to try to understand us because that will never happen. I will say that you never know what someone goes through until you walk in their shoes. And to see that some of you on here were breeded with hatred for what you don't understand is truly sad.

You call that complining?, Lol Bitch get your mind right.

A complaint would be why does the white man hold us down and keep us from getting farther? A complaint would be saying that corporations are not hiring as much black people as white people so I'm not going to apply for a job. Did I say any of that dumb sh*t or anything close to it? The answer is no because that is not how I feel. That is what I consider complaining dim wit. Have a seat, Take a nap. Adjust your thoughts. Do something.

2690 days ago
40.

BIANCA    

IT IS AMAZING THAT IN THIS GREAT COUNTRY WE CAN'T SEE THAT RACISM STILL EXISTS. IT IS TOO LIVE IN A FOG IF YOU ARE BLIND TO IT. BLACK PEOPLE IN AMERICA HAS TAKEN BACK A WORD WITH SUCH NEGATIVE IMAGES, THAT WHEN OTHER RACES USE IT, THE IMAGE OF A BLK PERSON SWINGING BY A ROPE FROM AN OAK TREE COME TO MIND. IT IS NOT ANY DIFFERENT FROM A CAUCASIAN PERSON USING THE WORD RED-NECK, OR SOMETHING SIMILAR. WORDS THAT USE TO HURT A COMMUNITY NOW ARE USED IN A POSITIVE LIGHT TO DEFINE IT. I AM NOT SAYING I AGREE WITH ITS CONTINUAL USAGE, BUT I CAN UNDERSTAND IT. THERE IS A SONG, THAT IS A COLLABORATION BETWEEN TO NATIONAL RAP ICONS, THE GAME AND BUSTA RHYMES..2 MEN WHO COME FROM A DIFFERENT, STREET UPBRINGING, IN THIS SONG THE "N" WORD IS USED 29 TIMES AND NOT ONCE WAS IT USED IN AN UNKIND WAY. IT WAS MORE OF AN ENDEARING TERM USED IN EXCHANGE FOR THE TERM "FRIEND". AMERICA NEED TO REALIZE THERE IS A DIFFERENCE IN ITS USAGE. IF I RECALL DIDN'T SPIKE LEE USE IT IN MOVIES BEFORE???? THIS EXCHANGE ON THIS WEBSITE SHOWS THERE IS A GREAT DIVIDE, AND AMERICANS HAVE NOT FOUND A WAY TO DEAL WITH IT YET.

2690 days ago
41.

Had Enough    

Kammy -

Is this how you make a point? By using foul language and belittling some one you have no clue about? You're parents would be proud. As I recall I did not call you names or insult you. I simply argued the points that you made and if you can't handle an arguement, i do believe The Barney Show has a blog that would welcome your thoughts. And to answer your question about if i would take the police on a high speed chase to evade an arrest. The answer is no and that's typical of most people. But I wouldn't put myself in a situation that would give police probable cause like that but we'll put that point aside because you seem to have such an amazing arguement regarding that (note the sarcasm). I would remind you the definition of a complaint for you to show that yes, you are complaining, but its not worth the effort. As far as calling me a dim wit? You are more than welcome to as soon as you learn correct spelling and proper grammer and in regards to adjusting my thoughts. You're right, I'll adjust them by losing all thoughts of your comments.

2690 days ago
42.

MB    

Its sad that humanity is going into the twent-first century and there are people who still hang on so tight to racism. I see movies that slam white women who are with black men, especially from mr.Lee. He seems to take his veiws to the evtreme, For instance white women are whores, home reckers, freaky and so on, where does he do his research.. I never see him slam the women when the situation is reversed. The N word flys out the mouths of mostly younger black people as a permenant part of their vocabulary. The young children of all colors ;that are still innocent ; and have no idea what it means have to grow up hearing it in the malls, playgrounds, school grounds, ect... Everyone needs to be proud of who they are, and where they come from. Then do the research , educate your children. We need to pull it together before its to late and Hollywood you definitely need to be more aware of what you do. Being rich and famous doesn't give you a free pass.
MB

2690 days ago
43.

steve    

Kammy,
you prove my point to eloquently. THANKS !!!!

2689 days ago
44.

Had Enough    

Kammy -
You make me laugh. When you post a comment on a blog, I do believe it is meant for EVERYONE to read. I hope you don't have to write any major papers for your Criminal Justice degree and hopefully that degree is the special prize at the bottom of a cereal box because you have no hope.

44. Kammy,
you prove my point to eloquently. THANKS !!!!

Posted at 12:44AM on Dec 10th 2006 by steve

So is this the positve feedback that just makes your day? And you probably don't even have a clue that he's mocking you. What humor. As for spellcheck, that must be on idiot's computers because i'm missing that button. If forgetting to capitalize an I is my only mistake, I'd say I have a better shot in life than you. Good luck.

2686 days ago
45.

MWolf    

#26 . .you probably meant #24, not #25. . .grammatical moron. I stand by my accessment of Spike Lee being an egotistical little sneaker pimp. It would certainly help if he hadn't been so pretentious as to put his briar eating mug in his early movies. That's why directors hire ACTORS Spike. But what can you expect of a man who sought an injunction against SpikeTV. .just because he felt it his God given right to be the ONLY "spike" in the deck? His Napoleonic complex just belies his shortcomings. . .something you probably know very well. I've tried watching his "work". . .but not anymore. All artistes have their right to slant their efforts. Granted. But it's the audience that makes a filmmaker. . .for without an audience, the money for making further films won't be there. I rest my case.

Nakia. Incredibly well stated prose. And right on the button. I've personally thought that the "hyphen" was . .and is. . .one of the most divisive factions the people of America can use to affirm their class and race. From the African American to the Lithuanian American and every culture in between, it seems that we all need to be heard. My brother-in-law, who's black, states it this way, "I'm an American of African decent.". Makes sense to me. I don't want to be pidgeon holed into any category. Period. I'm happy to be known as an. . American.
One hundred years from now, the US will either be THE most alphabetically challenged, totally ungovernable country on earth. . .or an even stronger nation IF we choose to maintain the concept of "America". I won't be around to judge but at the rate we're going, it's not too hard to foresee. Anyone out there remember 9/11? Well, here's a newsflash. The radical Islamics are having a field day watching up self destruct. . .and more than glad to help us succeed. Don't fool yourself, we don't have a monopoly on racism or bigotry in America. We're too busy fighting each other to notice that the "sand niggers" in the Middle East hate us more.

Nakia, you're exactly right. If you don't like it, fix it. If you're not part of the solution, then you're part of the problem. Sticks and stones. . . . but at least, get up and DO something positive.

2686 days ago
Previous 15 Comments | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | Most Recent | Next 15 Comments

Around The Web