ARCHERD: Spike Lee Disses 'Nigger' Usage

* By Army Archerd, Daily Variety Senior Columnist *

HOLLYWOOD (Variety) - The word "nigger" is used 38 times in Quentin Tarantino's "Jackie Brown," says Spike Lee -- and he doesn't like it. And neither do I.

In Daily Variety's review of the picture on Dec. 16, Todd McCarthy points out, nearly every phrase (spoken by Samuel L. Jackson's character) contains the "n-word."

Lee admits, "I'm not against the word, (though I am) and I use it, but not excessively. And some people speak that way. But, Quentin is infatuated with that word. What does he want to be made -- an honorary black man?"

Lee says he has spoken to Miramax's Harvey Weinstein and the film's producer, Lawrence Bender, about the excessive use of the word. Lee would like to find out from Tarantino why he used it so frequently in this film "and he uses it in all his pictures: 'Pulp Fiction' and 'Reservoir Dogs...' I want Quentin to know that all African-Americans do not think that word is trendy or slick." Lee admits, "I don't expect them to change (the prints now out), but I want him (Tarantino) to know about it for future reference."

Lee is now in post-production on his "He Got Game" for a May release by Touchstone; Sony, where Lee has his deal, "didn't want it," he says, so he took it to Disney. "He Got Game" stars Denzel Washington.

He also starred in Lee's "Mo Better Blues," in which I (and others) called Lee to task for making the portrayals of characters Moe and Josh Flatbush Jewish caricatures: in his review, Newsweek's David Ansen described them as "villainous Shylocks," reminding, "Coming from a self-proclaimed enemy of ethnic stereotyping (Lee), this is inexcusable."

Tuesday, returning to the use of the n-word in "Jackie Brown," Lee reminded Tarantino and his "Jackie Brown" filmmakers, "If I had used the word 'kike' 38 times in 'Mo Better Blues,' it would have been my last picture."

- - By Army Archerd

Go Back To Political Directory

Go Back To Davey D Homepage

Political Message Board

[home] [chat] [conferencing] [updates] [what it is]
[politics] [contests] [opinion] [links/photos] [media]

this site is produced by Davey D in association with eLine Productions