Samuel L. Jackson and Brie Larson presented the screenplay awards at this year’s Oscars, and before the serious stuff began Jackson let Spike Lee know that his beloved New York Knicks snapped a huge losing streak on this very night. With that good news out of the way, he then informed Lee that his own losing streak of Academy Award nominations without a win was over. At long last, Lee was recognized by the Oscars with a win for Best Adapted Screenplay for BlacKkKlansman. The writer and director stormed the stage, leapt into Jackson’s arms and said, “Four hundred years. Our ancestors were stolen from mother Africa then brought to Jamestown, Virginia and enslaved.” He then talked about the money his grandmother put away to put her first grandson, “Spikey-poo,” through college and eventually film school, and implored everyone watching to “do the right thing” with the 2020 presidential election “right around the corner.”
Lee had previously been nominated for Original Screenplay for Do The Right Thing in 1990 and Best Documentary Feature for 1998’s 4 Little Girls. He also received an honorary Oscar in 2015 for his contributions to film. When Lee first approached the microphone on the Oscar stage tonight, an expletive was bleeped out, but reporting from inside the ceremony provided helpful reassurance that the filmmaker was not going to have his hard-earned moment receiving the top honor in film cut short.
Upon exiting the stage, he retreived his Oscar directly from Jackson.