It takes hard work to be a racist. I guess that’s why Spike Lee doesn’t make that many movies. He’s busy. Like a few weeks ago, when he blasted Clint Eastwood to the media because the legendary director’s movie, Flags of Our Fathers, didn’t contain any black soldiers. You know, despite the fact that the U.S. Military was segregated during WWII:
There were many African-Americans who survived that war and who were upset at Clint for not having one [in the films]. That was his version: the negro soldier did not exist. I have a different version.”…”Clint Eastwood made two films about Iwo Jima that ran for more than four hours total, and there was not one Negro actor on the screen,” Lee said. “If you reporters had any balls you’d ask him why. There’s no way I know why he did that … But I know it was pointed out to him and that he could have changed it. It’s not like he didn’t know.”
In an interview Eastwood answered back. Game, set, match:
In typically outspoken language, Eastwood justified his choice of actors, saying that those black troops who did take part in the battle as part of a munitions company didn’t raise the flag. The battle is known by the image of US marines raising the American flag on Mount Suribachi. “The story is Flags of Our Fathers, the famous flag-raising picture, and they didn’t do that. If I go ahead and put an African-American actor in there, people’d go: ‘This guy’s lost his mind.’ I mean, it’s not accurate.” Referring to Lee, he added: “A guy like him should shut his face.”..Defending the racial make-up in his films as historically accurate, Eastwood referred to another of his films, Changeling, which was set in Los Angeles before the city had a large group of African-Americans. “What are you going to do, you going to tell a fuckin’ story about that?” he said. “Make it look like a commercial for an equal opportunity player? I’m not in that game. I’m playing it the way I read it historically, and that’s the way it is. When I do a movie and it’s 90% black, like Bird, then I use 90% black people. “He was complaining when I did Bird (the 1988 biopic of Charlie Parker). Why would a white guy be doing that? I was the only guy who made it, that’s why. He could have gone ahead and made it. Instead he was making something else.”
Wow. I think we can all agree that the only thing missing from Clint Eastwood’s response was a finishing move.
Racist douchebag update: You thought Spike Lee would shut the fuck up after that? Of course you didn’t. Via ABC news:
First of all, the man is not my father and we’re not on a plantation either,” he told ABCNEWS.com. “He’s a great director. He makes his films, I make my films. The thing about it though, I didn’t personally attack him. And a comment like ‘a guy like that should shut his face’ — come on Clint, come on. He sounds like an angry old man right there.”..”If he wishes, I could assemble African-American men who fought at Iwo Jima and I’d like him to tell these guys that what they did was insignificant and they did not exist,” he said. “I’m not making this up. I know history. I’m a student of history. And I know the history of Hollywood and its omission of the one million African-American men and women who contributed to WWII.”
Spike Lee is right. Those 900 black soldiers out of the 70,000 that landed on Iwo Jima really helped turned the tide.