I Was Right. Spike Lee’s an Even Bigger Dick Than I Am.
When I went off on my Kickstarter rant, I got the usual abusive comments from my beloved Egotist readers. Oh the hate and the vitriol, all because I tried to stick up for the little guy. What a complete douchebag I am.
Anyway, although I aimed the rant at many celebs, it was Spike Lee that I was most pissed at. He has made some incredible movies, and has also shown the tenacity to get things done. But he has also been a prize twat. And when Juan Luis Garcia wrote an open letter to him recently, telling him how his key art agency blatantly stole his Old Boy poster designs, Spike tweeted something I can only describe as really dickish.
If you haven’t seen the letter, or the designs, the original post has been yanked for who knows what reason but you can see a portion of the post here. It’s fairly obvious the agency ripped off the guy because he didn’t accept their piss-poor buyout offer.
I should add at this point that Juan is either really naïve, or really dumb. As many people in the industry commented, you need a contract when you’re working with agencies like this. They have a reputation for being less than honest, and without some legal support you’re completely screwed. In some respects, Juan had it coming. His open letter is also somewhat transparent. He’s really laying it on thick. But all that aside, he was a small guy who was beaten up by a massive Hollywood machine. And he reached out for help to the one man who may actually have the power to help…
…the director of Old Boy, Spike Lee himself.
So when Spike replied with the following tweet, you could actually hear the entire design industry drop their shoulders and sigh. It was another “fuck you” from a man who was once a nobody, and now thinks he’s above everybody. The tweet read:
“I Never Heard Of This Guy Juan Luis Garcia, If He Has A Beef It's Not With Me. I Did Not Hire Him, Do Not Know Him. Cheap Trick Writing To Me. YO."
When one follower of Spike’s replied “Dude, pay the graphic artist,” something Spike could do without making a dent in his massive fortune, he replied:
“Why Should I Pay Someone Who I Never Met Nor Had Any Contact With Ever? He Never Made Any Deal With Me. Why Don't You Pay Me For Your Stupid Text On Thanksgiving Day?"
Let’s not forget, this is the same Spike Lee that sued the TV channel SPIKE for infringing on his name! And as this suit was settled, we know Spike Lee got something out of it.
But this is not a series of isolated incidents. It is obvious that Spike Lee has quite the high opinion of himself, and believes he is superior to most of us. When George Zimmerman was on trial for the shooting of Trayvon Martin, most of us were appalled by Zimmerman’s actions. I was. I probably wanted to say what Spike Lee said, but here’s the thing. Even though I have a very small following, I know it is irresponsible to do something that would incite violence.
Spike Lee, with his 545k followers, decided to retweet the address of George Zimmerman. Why? Well, you can ask Spike, but common sense would make it clear he wanted people to pay George a visit. And as it turns out, he retweeted the wrong address, putting an elderly couple, the McClains, in fear for their lives.
And then there’s the late Patrice O’Neal, a great comic who died way ahead of his time. He talked openly about the Spike Lee cartel just a few months before he died. Some people say the two are connected, I doubt that. But we do know Patrice was way too honest for Hollywood’s liking. When he talks about the Spike Lee cartel (it starts around 16:30 on this recording) he basically says that if you say no to Spike Lee, you’re done. No second chances. No more help. Turn him down when he asks for a favor, he’ll torpedo your chances of success. Not my words, the words of someone who worked closely with him…until he crossed him.
And how did he cross the great Spike Lee? Patrice said he wanted Spike to go through his agent for a part he had lined up for him, so his agent didn't get screwed out of a deal. For that, Spike Lee shunned one of the great comedians of our time. He’s not well known, he should have been huge. And now, sadly, he won't get another chance.
Here’s another example of Spike Lee’s ego. He attacked the great Clint Eastwood for not depicting black Marines in the World War II film Flags Of Our Fathers, or his previous film Letters From Iwo Jima. As Clint pointed out, telling Lee to “shut his face,” there were no black marines involved in the raising of the flag on Mount Suribachi. Still, that didn’t stop Spike Lee from coming back at Clint, calling him an “angry old man.”
Who needs historical accuracy, Spike? Well, when it comes to historical films, I think we all do don’t we?
At the time of writing this “attack,” Spike Lee’s remake of Old Boy (a film that did not need to be remade AT ALL) has been a complete financial failure. It’s tanking, big time.
Maybe that’s a good example of poetic justice.