Spike Lee On ‘Chi-Raq’: ‘The Mission Of This Film Was To Save Lives’

Movies & TV

Spike Lee has has had enough from the Chi-Raq naysayers, and went on Sway In The Morning to silence those who think the film is making a mockery of the gang associated deaths on the city’s South Side.

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“This is Chicago’s Do The Right Thing” the prolific film director said.

The film, which stars Samuel L. Jackson, Jennifer Hudson, LaLa Anthony and Angela Basset, centers around the women of the community agreeing to withhold sex from their gang-member boyfriends in hopes to stop the bloodshed.

When asked by Shade 45 co-host Tracy G if the women’s role in the film was sexist, Lee then turned the tables on critics.

“Here’s the thing, I’ve been doing this since 1986. My first film was She’s Gotta Have It. Some black women said she’s an empowered black woman, other black women said that it was the stereotype of the sexualized black woman. I feel the character is a very strong character and you see her growth. Let’s look at the women in the film. Teyonah Paris, Angela Basset and Jennifer Hudson. If you don’t think those great actresses portray strong black women in the film, I don’t know if you know what a strong black woman is.”

The 58-year-old director, who just received an honorary Oscar, quickly became irate while defending the film against those who accused him of being exploitative.

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“If you have not seen the film and you felt that we were making fun of the murders on the streets of Chicago or that we were making light of it, let me ask everyone a question: Jennifer Hudson’s mother, brother and nephew was murdered in Chicago, why would Jennifer Hudson be in a film that ridiculed her murdered mother, brother and nephew? Why would she be a part of that?”

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Check out the rest of the passionate interview below.