In 1986, Spike Lee made the film She’s Gotta Have It a comedy about sexual relationships. Since then, Lee has become a well-known, intelligent, and talented filmmaker. His next movie was School Daze (1988). With School Daze in profit, Lee went on to do his landmark film, Do the Right Thing (1989), a movie specifically about his own town in Brooklyn, New York.
Lee went on to produce the jazz biopic Mo’ Better Blues (1990), which did not seem to be as controversial as his previous efforts,but showed his talent for directing and acting. His next film, Jungle Fever (1991), was about interracial dating. Lee’s next film was the self-titled biography Malcolm X (1992), which had Denzel Washington portraying the civil rights leader. The movie was a success, and resulted in an Oscar nomination for Washington.
In 2006, Lee directed and produced the Emmy Award-winning four-hour documentary for television, When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts (2006), about life in New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. He also did well at the box office that year with the crime caper “Inside Man”.
In addition to his achievements in feature films, Lee has produced and directed numerous music videos for such diverse artists as Miles Davis, Chaka Khan, Tracy Chapman, Anita Baker, Public Enemy, Bruce Hornsby and Michael Jackson. His other music videos include work for the late Phyliss Hyman, Naughty by Nature and Arrested Development.
Lee’s commercial work began in 1988 with his Nike Air Jordan campaign. He has also completed a PSA for UNCF which features Michael Jordan. Lee is also well known for his Levi’s Button Fly 501, AT&T and ESPN television commercials. Other commercial ventures include TV spots for Phillips, Nike, American Express, Snapple and Taco Bell, among others. Lee has directed Art Spot Shorts for MTV and a short film featuring Branford Marsalis and Diahnne Abbott for Saturday Night Live. Lee is also involved in documentaries and sport programs, having completed the Emmy and Oscar-nominated documentary, 4 Little Girls, for HBO and receiving an Emmy award for his piece on John Thompson for HBO/Real Sports.
Miracle at St. Anna (2008)
When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts (2006) Inside Man (2005)
25th Hour (2002)
Summer of Sam (1999)
Michael Jackson: HIStory on Film – Volume II (1997) Malcolm X (1992)
Jungle Fever (1991)