Spike Lee Honoured At Montreal International Black Film Festival

Spike Lee was honoured with the Pioneer Award last night at the Montreal International Black Film Festival –  the MIBFF was thrilled to grant him this prestigious award in recognition of his body of work which revolutionized the role of black talent in Hollywood, tearing away decades of stereotypes and marginalized portrayals to establish a new arena for African-American voices to be heard (according to their official website).


The award ceremony preceded the Canadian premiere of “Da Sweet Blood of Jesus,” Lee’s latest project, which was funded by Kickstarter. Following the film screening, audience members had the opportunity to participate in a Q&A session with the famed director.

Lee held a press conference in Montreal, where he said (as reported by The Canadian Press), “Twenty-five years ago, I would have never thought there would be an African-American president. That’s something that happened, so there have been many great developments. But there are more African-Americans who are in poverty now than there were back 25 years ago and police are still killing black people.”

Lee wears many hats, from writer and director to actor, producer, published author, and teacher. Several of Lee’s films deal with questions and dilemmas surrounding African American identity, gender, and class, such as his breakout project “She’s Gotta Have It” (1986) and then later in “Do the Right Thing” (1989), “Mo’ Better Blues” (1990), “Jungle Fever” (1993), “Malcolm X” (1992) (which earned Denzel Washington an Oscar nomination), and the mainstream heist thriller “Inside Man” (2006).

Photo: Spike Lee/Montreal International Black Film Festival