He’s been able to “Do the Right Thing” for two decades, and now Brooklyn will honor filmmaker Spike Lee during a three-day festival.
"Where’s Mars: Brooklyn Honor Spike Lee” takes its name from Lee’s character in one of his early films, "She’s Gotta Have It." Organizer Rasu Jilani says the tribute is also meant to coincide with the 20th anniversary of "Do the Right Thing" saying “That’s the most synonymous with Brooklyn and Spike Lee epitomizes Brooklyn."
The Brooklyn native will be honored through events including the “He Got Game” father/son basketball tournament, a photo exhibit featuring Lee’s brother, David Lee, panel discussions with notable Brooklyn authors and personalities, a poetry slam, and an art exhibit inspired by Lee’s work where organizer Sallome Hralima says pieces were submitted from artists from “all over the world actually.”
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"He took one medium, which is film, said Hralima, "and completely transformed the people look at sports, the way people look at people of color in film, the way that people look at marketing and merchandising their own names."
The “Where’s Mars” tribute starts Thursday, June 25th and lasts until the 28th.
BROOKLYN HONORS SPIKE LEE IS A MULTI-FACETED TRIBUTE, orchestrated by PlanIt Brooklyn, that invites the 5 Boroughs, and the world, to celebrate the breadth and scope of Lee’s work and educate them about the impact he has had on popular culture. Through collaborations with respected Brooklyn entities, Brooklyn Honors Spike Lee sets a standard in innovation comparable to the quality and integrity of the cultural contributions demonstrated by the icon.
We invite New York residents, music legends and rising stars, film and television celebrities, entertainment industry leaders, trendsetters of the fashion world, fans, and … YOU, to the ultimate Spike Lee experience – “mind – body – spirit”.
We’ve Gotta Have It!: Art Inspired by Spike Lee – Salena Gallery, Brooklyn Campus of Long Island University, Thursday, June 25, 2009, 6PM
While Spike Lee is known for his moving images, his work has influenced a multitude of artists that cross genre, language, and border. During the exhibition’s opening art lovers will see Lee and his films as inspiration through ballpoint, chalk, oil paint, stencils and more.
The Man and the Brand: Spike Lee Panel – Spike Lee Screening Room, Brooklyn Campus of Long Island University, Thursday, June 25, 2009, 7PM
A critically acclaimed panel that will discuss the indelible mark Lee has made on popular culture, with panelists including native Brooklyn television personalities, actors, academicians, entrepreneurs and entertainers. RSVP Here
Buggin’ Out: Poetry Inspired by Spike Lee - Brooklyn Historical Society, Friday, June, 26, 2009, 7PM
“Do the Right Thing” was laced with some of the most memorable lines and quotes of the 1980s. Through Sweet Dick Willie, Pino, Martin Luther King, and Malcolm X, Spike Lee used soul-stirring language to connect with audiences. This event will demonstrate the impact Lee’s films have had on the revived art of spoken word.
He Got Game: Father & Son Basketball Tournament – McLaughlin (Tillary) Park, Saturday, June 27, 2009, 5PM
This two-on-two tournament will include father (male guardian or mentor) and son teams (two-on-two) playing for the He Got Game Trophy. Participants will witness star-studded performances and a female basketball shoot-out, receive Brooklyn Honors Spike Lee giveaways, and family and friends in attendance are encouraged to picnic. REGISTER TO PLAY here
Do The Spike Thing: A Block Party – MOVED TO A LATER DATE
Back in the day Spike Lee was known for throwing the most anticipated block parties in Brooklyn. Not only was the borough fast becoming a filmmaker’s dream backdrop, it was slowly turning into the best place to gather on a warm summer’s day. Done “Dave Chappelle-Style,” participants are guided to an undisclosed location in Brooklyn, complete with live performances, “red carpet sightings,” and family-centered activities.