Cannes 2018: Spike Lee receives 8-minute standing ovation for BlacKkKlansman

The director famously lost out on the Palme d'Or in 1989

Jacob Stolworthy
Tuesday 15 May 2018 08:31 BST

Filmmaker Spike Lee received a ten-minute standing ovation at Cannes Film Festival following the premiere of his new film.

Drama BlacKkKlansman - our review of which you can read here - reportedly drew applause from the assembled audience “a half-dozen” times throughout the screening. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the film's rapturous response lasted for ten minutes as soon as the credits began to roll with many taking to their feet in celebration of the director.

The film, which is produced by Get Out's Jordan Peele, stars John David Washington, Adam Driver and Topher Grace in the lead roles. Set in the early 70s, it follows Washington's Ron Stallworth who, after becoming the first African-American detective on the Colorado Springs Police Department, sets out to infiltrate and expose the Ku Klux Klan while posing as a racist extremist.

It's based on Stallworth's very own biography Black Klansman. Grace is winning rave reviews for his portrayal of former KKK leader David Duke.

Lee, who has premiered five of his previous films at Cannes, famously lost out on winning the coveted Palme d'Or in 1989 for Do the Right Thing. It went to Steven Soderbergh's Sex, Lies, and Videotape instead.

BlacKkKlansman's release will coincide with the one-year anniversary of the Charlottesville riots which saw one woman die after a car drove into a crowd during a clash between white nationalists and anti-fascist protestors. The emotional finale is said to include real footage of the incident.

Other films to have impressed critics at Cannes include new Gasper Noé film Climax, Cold War and Paul Dano's directorial debut Wildlife starring Cary Mulligan and Jake Gyllenhaal.

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