Monday, January 18, 2021

Angela Bassett, Ryan Coogler, Da 5 Bloods to Honor Spike Lee at American Cinematheque Ceremony

spike lee - getty

*Spike Lee will receive the American Cinematheque Award during a virtual tribute on Jan. 14, and several Black actors will be on hand to honor the iconic filmmaker. 

The American Cinematheque announced the line-up of stage and screen stars who will pay tribute to Lee as he receives the 34th American Cinematheque Award. Colleagues and collaborators including Angela Bassett, Ryan Coogler, Jodie Foster, Rosie Perez, and ‘Da 5 Bloods’ – Delroy Lindo, Jonathan Majors, Clarke Peters, Norm Lewis and Isiah Whitlock Jr. – will honor the prolific filmmaker and celebrate his iconic repertoire of work, per press release. 

“As a cultural arts organization that celebrates the importance of film in our society, Spike Lee is the perfect choice for the Cinematheque’s annual award,” said American Cinematheque chair Rick Nicita. “Spike’s ability to perceive and depict the tone of contemporary society is shown in his movies, ranging from ‘Do the Right Thing,’ ‘She’s Gotta Have It,’ ‘Malcolm X’ and ‘BlacKkKlansman’ to name only a few. He continues his outstanding output with this year’s ‘Da 5 Bloods’ and ‘American Utopia.’ We look forward with great anticipation to where he will next shine his light.”

READ MORE: Spike Lee to Receive American Cinematheque Award in 2021

Spike Lee is a five-time Oscar nominee who won best adapted screenplay for BlacKkKlansman, most recently directed David Byrne’s American Utopia movie adaptation, and before that films like BlacKkKlansman, She’s Gotta Have It, School Daze, Do the Right Thing, Mo’ Better Blues, Jungle Fever, Malcolm X, Crooklyn, Clockers and Girl 6.  Lee’s feature documentary work includes If God Is Willing and Da Creek Don’t Rise, a follow up to his HBO documentary film When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts. For television, he directed Netflix’s She’s Gotta Have It, a contemporary update of his classic film. 

“Our virtual presentation of the AC Award to Spike Lee is a celebration of his extraordinary body of work and an incredible look at the importance of his legacy to his generation and the ones that are following as told by his friends and collaborators over four decades, said Nicita.  “We are extremely grateful to the entertainment industry companies and individual donors of this annual event in these challenging times for their continued generosity that enabled us to reach our goal of $500,000 in support of the mission of the non-profit cultural arts organization.” 

Since 1986, the American Cinematheque Award has been presented annually to an extraordinary artist currently making a significant contribution to the art of the Moving Picture. Proceeds will support the American Cinematheque’s pivot to create the AC Digital Hub providing virtual programming of our critically acclaimed classic, international, independent film programs, and for the diversification of its programming and audience reach. 

Previous American Cinematheque Award honorees include: Eddie Murphy (1986); Bette Midler (1987); Robin Williams (1988); Steven Spielberg (1989); Ron Howard (1990); Martin Scorsese (1991); Sean Connery (1992); Michael Douglas (1993); Rob Reiner (1994); Mel Gibson (1995); Tom Cruise (1996); John Travolta (1997); Arnold Schwarzenegger (1998); Jodie Foster (1999); Bruce Willis (2000); Nicolas Cage (2001); Denzel Washington (2002); Nicole Kidman (2003); Steve Martin (2004); Al Pacino (2005) George Clooney (2006), Julia Roberts (2007); Samuel L. Jackson (2008); Matt Damon (2010); Robert Downey Jr. (2011), Ben Stiller (2012), Jerry Bruckheimer (2013), Matthew McConaughey (2014), Reese Witherspoon (2015), Ridley Scott (2016), Amy Adams (2017), Bradley Cooper (2018), Charlize Theron (2019). 

About The American Cinematheque
Established in 1984, the American Cinematheque is a member supported 501(c)(3) non-profit cultural arts organization. The American Cinematheque celebrates the moving picture in all its forms and is dedicated to building a diverse and engaged film community through immersive film curation, conversation, and presentation.

Ny MaGee
Ny MaGee is a screenwriter and freelance reporter from Chicago -- currently living in Los Angeles and covering A-list entertainment for various outlets, including Emmys.com. She has worked for: Miramax, MTV & VH1, The Jim Henson Company, Hallmark Channel, Paramount Pictures, and for iconic indie film producer Roger Corman.

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