Spike Lee Blasts Trump During Cannes Speech Over Charlottesville Riots

Lawrence Kim
May 16, 2018

Director Spike Lee railed against President Donald Trump in an expletive-laced monologue on Tuesday following the debut of his new film "BlacKkKlansman" at the Cannes Film Festival.

Director Spike Lee poses for photographers during a photo call for the film "BlacKkKlansman" at the 71st worldwide film festival, Cannes, southern France, Tuesday, May 15, 2018.

Spike spoke about his controversial decision to end the film with documentary footage of the violent protest by neo-Nazis and white supremacists last summer in Charlottesville, Va., including scenes of the killing of counter-protester Heather Heyer. Ron Stallworth (John David Washington) becomes the first African-American detective on the Colorado Springs Police Department, but his arrival is greeted with skepticism and open hostility by the department's rank and file. Over the phone, it's easy enough for Stallworth to set up his character, as he puts on his best white voice and tells chapter president David Duke, played by Topher Grace, how he hates everyone who doesn't have "pure white Aryan blood running through their veins".

An official trailer for BlacKkKlansman, which is directed by Spike Lee and produced by Jordan Peele, was released this week by Focus Features.

"We have a guy in the White House - I'm not gonna say his f**king name - who defined that moment not just for Americans but the world", said Lee.

"I was not going to put that murder scene in the film without her blessing", said Lee.

"This right-wing (expletive) is not just America". It's all over the world. We can't be silent.

Lee said he reached out to Heyer's mother, Susan Bro, and received her permission to include footage of her daughter being run down by a white supremacist in a vehicle. It's everybody. We all live on this planet, and this guy in the White House has the nuclear code.

At the premiere Monday, Lee was outfitted in a shiny purple-and-orange tuxedo and wore one ring declaring "love" on one hand, and "hate" on the other, paying homage to the jewelry won by the character Radio Raheem in his previous film "Do the Right Thing".

He hopes "BlacKkKlansman" "shakes people from their slumber". And I like to say this is not just something that pertains to the United States of America, this bullshit has gone over the world. "We're on the right side of history with this film".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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