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Born in Georgia in 1957, Lee was nicknamed “Spike” due to his tough attitude. Pursuing an education in film, Lee began making his own by the early 1980s. 1986’s She’s Gotta Have It was a surprise hit, and garnered him great attention in Hollywood for his hip urban sensibility and racial discourse.
Spike’s esteemed message movies include Do the Right Thing (1989), Malcolm X (1992), and the documentary Four Little Girls (1997).
A vociferous if polarizing figurehead of black American culture, Lee’s current projects include a Michael Jordon doc and James Brown biopic.