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Today marks the 57th birthday of American film director, Spike Lee.

Né Shelton Jackson Lee, the iconic producer was born in Atlanta, Georgia and began making amateur films at the tender age of 20, having garnered a Student Academy Award for his graduate thesis project.

Later, Spike sparked attention with his first feature, She’s Gotta Have It (1986), an avant-garde (and extremely profitable) movie for its time, considering it was about a woman and her three lovers. Spike continues to create films that delve into provoking topics like politics, race and violence, all largely inspired by the place he calls home – Brooklyn, NY.

In honor of the man whose movies foreshadowed so many of today’s current societal issues (see Do The Right Thing), we’d like to extend our gratitude by acknowledging his turning another year old with 15 iconic photos of the renaissance man we grew to love and admire so much.


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