Spike Lee continues to make history, this time with a presidential title for an acclaimed film festival. According to Shadow and Act, Spike Lee has been chosen to head the 73rd Cannes Film Festival jury, making him the first Black president of the jury. Lee’s colleagues in film will make up the rest of the jury who selects which film receives the festival’s highest award, the Palme d’Or.
Lee has already made his mark on the Cannes Film Festival, considering the Oscar-winning writer and director had three of his movies featured in the festival’s lineup, including Do The Right Thing, Jungle Fever, and BlacKkKlansman.
BlacKkKlansman went on to become Lee’s biggest successes in terms of awards. The movie, which stars John David Washington, won the Grand Prix prize at Cannes in 2018. The movie also earned Lee an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay, and it was nominated for an Oscar for Best Picture and Best Director that same year.
“In this life I have lived, my biggest blessings have been when they arrived unexpected, when they happened out of nowhere,” Lee wrote in a statement. “When I got the call that I was offered the opportunity to be President of Cannes Jury for 2020, I was shocked, happy, surprised and proud all at the same time.”
The festival is set to convene later this year.
Congrats to Mr. Lee!