Boots Riley Claims Spike Lee Yelled at Him for Blasting ‘BlacKkKlansman’

Source: Variety

“I’m Miles Davis, you’re Chet Baker.”

As all eyes descend upon The Oscars for The Academy’s hostless 91st annual ceremony, Boots Riley was on the red carpet of another awards show clearing the air over his recent spat with director Spike Lee.

READ: Boots Riley Has Some Sharp Critiques of Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman

Last year, Riley wrote a scathing critique of Lee’s BlacKkKlasman that claimed the film (nominated for 6 Oscars this evening) distorted the reality of Ron Stallworth’s role in the FBI’s notorious COINTELPRO initiative, making a hero out of a black officer infiltrating radical black groups. Later, Lee would indirectly respond in an interview with The Times, defending his work as “very critical of police.”

READ: Boots Riley Signed a Deal for His Next Film Project

But in a recent red-carpet chat with Variety at the Indie Spirit Awards, Riley revealed that tensions came to a head at Governor’s Ball, where Lee yelled “I’m Miles Davis, you’re Chet Baker,” at the Sorry To Bother You director during a heated exchange. Riley claims that it wasn’t until seeing Lee again at Directors Guild of America lunch that the directors settled their beef with a one-armed hug.

Watch Boots Riley detail the incident in the clip below.


Zo is a staff writer at Okayplayer where he covers music.

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