Spike Lee was reportedly furious when ‘Green Book’ took the Best Picture Award at the Oscars and attempted to walk out of the Dolby Theater.
Lee had accepted the best adapted screenplay trophy for his movie ‘BlacKkKlansman” earlier in the night.
The veteran filmmaker, 61, had waited a long time to be recognized by his peers in the movie industry beyond the honorary Oscar he received in 2016 for his contributions to movies.
But by the end of the ceremony, Lee was seething, ‘got up and walked toward the back of the auditorium in a huff’ when ‘Green Book’ was announced as having won Best Picture, Deadline reported.
He then turned back and appeared to get into an intense conversation with the movie’s writer Jordan Peele, who was behind him.
He was pacing the aisle and stormed to the back of the auditorium. When he came back, he turned his back to the stage during the speech, according to Deadline.
‘Green Book’, which was directed by Peter Farrelly, also took home Best Original Screenplay, while Best Adapted Screenplay was the sole win for “BlacKkKlansman.”
When asked about the apparent snub backstage, Lee told reporters: ‘I thought I was courtside at the Garden and the ref made a bad call.’
‘Courtside,’ the die-hard New York basketball team fan said. ‘The world’s most famous arena, Madison Square Garden. Knicks coming back next year.’
When asked if winning Best Adapted Screenplay made up for his loss at the 1990 Oscars — his film Do the Right Thing lost for Best Picture that year to Driving Miss Daisy — Lee quipped, ‘Every time somebody is driving somebody, I lose!
‘They changed the seating arrangement! But in ’89 I didn’t get nominated. So, this one we did.’
Lee subsequently ended the interview by saying, ‘Whether this film won Best Picture or not, we’re on the right side of history.’
‘Green Book’ has been hailed as a tribute to racial tolerance by its makers and stars.