Spike Lee recently launched a $1.25M Kickstarter campaign for his upcoming independent film, but not too many people are for his decision to raise funding for his “Spike Lee Joint.”
The 56 year-old film director sat down with Smart Street host Trish Regan of Bloomberg News to talk about his latest idea, but once the interview introduction started, Lee had to pump the breaks and check her over how she went about it:
Whoa, whoa, whoa. Why would you open like that? First of all, you don’t know how much money I have. You’ve never seen me before in your life. So for you to assume what my financial state is, that’s wrong. Second of all, I’ve been doing kick-starting before there was a kickstarter [...] Thats how I raised the money for my first one, She’s Gotta Have It [...] We’re going to get this. You cannot be for my film if you open the segment like that. That was pure hate.
When asked why he chose to use the site, which is mainly used by novice filmmakers. Lee nipped that question in the butt, too:
Because crowdfunding is the new wave to get finance. Crowdfunding, where you go directly to your base, directly to the people who love She’s Gotta Have It, School Daze, Do The Right Thing, Malcolm X, He’s Got Game…[...], that’s a body of work that’s been amassed over 3 decades, and I’m going directly to the people [...] What’s different is the whole Hollywood game has changed.
He went on to refute the comments and criticism about him taking away from the aspiring filmmakers and artists, by simply saying, “That’s not true. I’m bringing people to kickstarter.” He also added that shows like Veronica Mars have introduced people to the fund-raising tool, too so he’s definitely not trying to take from the newbies:
Why would I be a professor at NYU for 15 years, the graduate film school – why would I be the artistic director of NYU, if I didn’t care about young filmmakers? I’m a professor. Since 1989, I have given out $300,000 to my students through the Spike Lee Production Fund. That is not an act of someone who is trying to squish out young film makers.
POW. Peep the full interview up top.