Chance the Rapper Says Chicago Doesn’t Support Spike Lee’s Chi-Raq; Spike Lee Responds

Yikes. Photo: Getty Images

Ever since Spike Lee’s upcoming Chi-Raq was first announced as a “musical comedy” about violence in Chicago, it has drawn considerable ire from several Chicago natives. Lee — who is famously not from Chicago — called the film’s critics “misinformed,” and now Chance the Rapper (recently named a Chicagoan of the Year) is speaking out against the film. In a series of outraged tweets, Chance says the city doesn’t endorse the film, saying, “Let me be the one from Chicago to personally tell you we not supporting this film out here.” He claims the film, based on Lysistrata, is both “exploitative” of the violence that has escalated in the city in recent years and “problematic.”

Update: Spike Lee has responded to Chance’s complaints in an interview with MSNBC: “First of all, Chance the Rapper should say full disclosure: His father works for the mayor. He’s the chief of staff. His father is the chief of staff. Show me any criticism, if you’re so concerned about Chicago, do your research, show me where he’s made criticisms about the mayor. I think your finds will be surprising. He’s not criticized the mayor. Why? His father works for the mayor.” Chance’s father, Ken Bennett, was appointed Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s deputy chief of staff and director of the Mayor’s Office of Public Engagement last year.

Chance the Rapper Calls Chi-Raq ‘Exploitative’