Spike Lee may revisit Katrina
Filmmaker talks upcoming projects at SilverdocsSpike Lee may not be done with Hurricane Katrina yet.
The director of the HBO miniseries "When the Levees Broke" said Thursday he's considering visiting the area where Katrina struck again in the next 24 months for a potential follow-up to "Levees."
"I'm going to go back, not just to New Orleans but to other areas affected, because it's not over," he told audiences at Silverdocs, the AFI/Discovery Channel docu fest in Silver Spring, Md., where he received the fest's Charles Guggenheim award.
While Lee didn't specify what the project would cover, he hinted at its focus when he described his feelings about the current situation on the Gulf Coast. "What the press is not really talking about is the mental state -- suicide, self-medication," he said. "It's horrible."
Lee also said he thinks there's room for a scripted feature about post-Katrina New Orleans and tipped that "The Wire" creator David Simon, whose "Generation Kill" debuts this summer on HBO, may be working on such a pic.
Lee also offered other bits about his own work. He said that his day-in-the-life docu on Kobe Bryant would kick off the NBA season on ABC/ESPN this fall and revealed that his docu about Michael Jordan's last season could see a public unspooling in 2009, with the director planning a Croisette debut. "We hope to have the world premiere at Cannes next May," Lee said.
The auteur also revealed that longtime editor Sam Pollard is involved in the Ed Norton-produced docu about Barack Obama and has already collected more than 1,000 hours of footage.
Lee noted an Obama presidency -- which the director said Thursday was so certain that "there's no 'if' " -- would change the culture of filmmaking. "As an artist you reflect what you see in the world, so I think you'll see a lot of artists reflect the change for good that the country is going to embark on."
The eight-day Silverdocs fest just outside of Washington, D.C., showcases a mix of established and emerging nonfiction filmmakers. Lee was characteristically outspoken at the award presentation, saying he'd "love to see a great film on Martin Luther King, but I don't think I can do it. I can't do everything. I've got to leave something for Tyler Perry."