The same night Academy voters were casting their last-minute Oscar ballots before their deadline, hopeful nominees came together at a reception in New York for one of the many awards season precursors, the Producers Guild Awards. Up for the top prize at this Saturday’s show is Spike Lee’s BlackkKlansman, but the nomination — along with the film's many other honors, starting with the Grand Prix at last year’s Cannes — is just “the cherry on top,” Lee says.
“The goal is not to be nominated. The goal is to make films of impact, and this film definitely has,” he told The Hollywood Reporter at the PGA reception. “I’m not trying to be some grandiose motherf—ker like ‘Oh, I don’t need awards.’ I’m not saying that. But what I’m saying is that, there are things more important.”
BlackkKlansman centers on the real-life black detective Ron Stallworth, who infiltrated the Ku Klux Klan in the 1970s. But the film also traces the racism that’s existed for decades in the U.S. to today, whether subtly with chants of “America first!” during the film, or not so much, with actual footage from Charlottesville’s deadly 2017 white nationalist rally playing at the end of the story.