31/07/2013 Newsnight


Should the PM apologise to Peter Cruddas? Where is the green jobs revolution? Who will win in Zimbabwe? And why is Spike Lee breaking with Hollywood funding models?

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Remember this? What happened is completely unacceptable, this is


not the way we raise money in the Conservative Party, it shouldn't


have happened, it is quite right that Peter Cruddas has resigned. I


will make sure there is a proper party inquiry to make sure this


can't happen again. That was March last year. Today Peter Cruddas won


his libel action against the Sunday Times, when the court found he did


not corruptly try to sell access to the Prime Minister. So is it time


for Mr Cameron to apologise? Also tonight:


Newsnight goes climbing the turbines of the Humber, they are a


giant economic success story for Denmark. In terms of the


Government's performance in off- shore wind strategy it has been an


F-grade. They have given consistently conflicting messages,


this was supposed to be the greenest Government ever? They


campaigned on that, it has just been confusing. Perhaps the Energy


Minister can explain. After 33 years in power Robert


Mugabe still feels he has more to offer the long-suffering people of


Zimbabwe. They have been going to the polls today, anyone like to


guess who will win. If you let me speak to the people of the UK, go


Arsenal. Why has Ang Lee taken up the virtual begging bowl to fund


his next movie! -- why has Spike Leely taken up the virtual begging


bowl to fund his next movie. The Sunday Times claimed that Mr


Cruddas a former co-treasurer for the Conservative Party was


supposedly in the business of corruptly selling access to the


Prime Minister. He was dropped within two hours by his political


friends. While today in the High Court Mr Cruddas won his libel


action against the Sunday Times for publishing what he called malicious


lies. The judge said that because of the false newspaper report the


Prime Minister had subjected Peter Cruddas to massive public


humiliation. Is there something seriously wrong with a political


system in which people are rapidly tried, convicted and punished by


the politicians, when what is necessary is to wait for the


reasonable process of the law to find out the facts. We have been


talking to Peter Cruddas. It looked like a scandal thought up


in central casting, a Conservative donor caught on camera bragging


that cash would buy you a place in the court of David Cameron.


�100,000 is not Premier League. It is not bad, it is probably bottom


of the Premier League. �200,000, �250,000 is Premier League. Within


two hours of these front pages dropping Peter Cruddas, Tory


treasurer for years, was treasureed by the Tory Party no more. What


happened is completely unacceptable, this is not the way we raise money


in the Conservative Party. It shouldn't have happened, it is


quite right that Peter Cruddas has resigned. I will make sure there is


a proper party inquiry to make sure this can't happen again. The party


moved to distance themselves, and Peter Cruddas lost his unpaid Tory


job within hours. Since no questions were asked of him, Peter


Cruddas lost his respect for the party. Over the last 16 months he


has fought the story in the High Court. Today a judge found in his


favour. The judge found that Peter Cruddas's taped comments were in


fact descriptions of agreed and legal party donations policy. The


judge also revealed that elsewhere in the full transcript Mr Cruddas


Today Peter Cruddas believes he's bested the newspaper that stung him.


Now he's turning his sights on the Conservatives. The fact of the


matter if you look at the sequence of events the party drafted my


resignation statement, they issued it and really since then I haven't


had any other contact. It is not closure for me. Because off the


back of the story the Conservative Party decided that they were going


to ostracise me, not support me and not only that they lined up to


criticise me. Unfortunately the damage to my reputation was


increased by their behaviour. this is the party that you have had


a decade or more relationship with and then they judged you within two


hours, through the media, how can you continue to have a functional


relationship with them? I don't know. I don't know if I can, to be


honest, but what I do know is I need closure and the fact of the


matter is that I have been heavily criticised by them. They didn't


know the facts. Perhaps they would like one day to hear my side of the


story. I would be happy to tell them, or better still, why don't


they read the judgment and see for themselves. The Sunday Times


Do you think that if they offered you your old role back you would


take it? Oh my God. What a question that is. I mean you know, six hours


ago I was in the High Court, I was getting the judgment handed down to


me, that is a massive feeling of relief, the dark cloud has lifted.


I want to enjoy that moment. I honestly haven't thought about that.


I mean I thought the party has disowned me, ignoring the fact that


I won no to AV with them, and with the team I injected a lot of cash.


I have supported David Cameron and given the Conservative Party �1.2


million since David Cameron became leader. Do you think had you been


one of David Cameron's mates, part of the famous cuum-oxcy, you would


have been street -- chum-ocracy, you would be treated differently?


Before this Mr Cameron treated me very nicely and well, I don't know


why this happened, I never felt, I know that you know, I know why you


are asking the question, he went to Eton and I went to Shoreditch


Comprehensive. I actually found that Mr Cameron was always very


fair to me and very supportive up until this incident. Why do you


think he's backed someone like Lord Fellman who is accused of saying


very damaging words that the party was "swivel-eyed loons", but so


swift to dismiss you? That is a question I'm going to want answered.


Will you vote Conservatives? Yes, I'm a Conservative always was and


always will be, you can thank Lady Thatcher for that. No way UKIP for


you? No.When the story broke the Prime Minister dropped Peter


Cruddas after more than two hours. Today more than two hours after the


new judgment Peter Cruddas has still not heard from the Prime


Minister. David Cameron's team might want to reach out, his party


is perceived as upper-class and out-of-touch. And there is one boy


from Shoreditch Comprehensive who is keen to make friends again.


It is obviously what he wants, he wants an apology from David Cameron,


is he going to get it? It doesn't look like it right now. It is


difficult to tell, all the key sources are on beaches in far flung


places. They are not in policy drafting mode. But today we had a


sign from the Tory Party chairman, who was asked seven-times to


apologise on camera, he ducked and weaved and didn't apologise, it


might have been, many you would say, easy. There are many colleagues who


think just go ahead and do it. People who spoke again this evening


to me who think he has been treated badly by dick defence and kicking


him out after -- quick defensive, kicking him out after two hours.


They think on a political level he is somebody who is not obviously a


close friend of David Camerons or an old Etonian, and that is


something that the party had massive problems and it wouldn't


just be good manners it would be good politics to make amends.


Conservative peer Lord Howell hit the headlines when he suggested


fracking would be appropriate in the north-east of England because


it was so desolate there. He has apologised and now claims he meant


the North West. Tomorrow we will hear of another potential energy


source producing jobs. The Government is due to launch its


off-shore wind strategy, aimed at filling energy needs and creating


jobs. It has certainly helped German and Danish workers. We have


gone in search of those elusive green jobs.


This may take some time. He has a rather long way to go. He is


climbing an offshore wind turbine, taller than the London Eye. Out at


sea, distances can be deceptive. This turbine's closest neighbour is


500ms away. This is the new Lincs Windfarm, providing power to


200,000 homes. Keeping the turbines turning is now the job of


maintenance workers based at Grimsby docks. Many of them are ex-


military. I think they are fantastic, I really do. I just


think they are very peaceful to look at. There is something almost


hypnotic about it. You just are harnessing mother nature.


mother nature doesn't come cheap. This wind farm cost investors,


including Centrica, �1 billion. No wonder this industry is subsidised.


But apart from electricity, what is the taxpayer getting for its money?


Well not the lion's share of the jobs. The turbines were built in


Denmark. That is hardly surprising, there are no turbine manufacturers


in the UK. Centrica says it is investing in the local work force.


We have employed 100 individuals, predominantly locally there in


highly-skilled jobs, engineering, technicians, vessel-type jobs. We


are having a very positive impact in the local area. But you are


still having to rely on the Germans and Danes when it comes to


installation? To a certain extent we have to, to be honest. The


technology is currently being constructed in Denmark and we have


to bring that expertise in. That expertise is being flown in every


day. Humberside Airport's only year-round international connection


is from Amsterdam. The three daily KLM flights bring in Scandinavian


off-shore workers. Such is the demand that soon there will be a


daily flight from Copenhagen. Is it a good job? Yeah.Well paid?


Of course. How long do you think you will be here for? For us it is


only four weeks. Do you know which wind farm you will be working on?


No. We don't know that yet. It is the first trip here so ...You


from Sweden? Yeah. Legend has it that it was a Danish


fisherman called Grim, who founded Grimsby in the 19th sent treatment


by the mid-20th century it claimed to be the world's biggest fishing


port. In this decaying factory they once manufactured ice to keep the


catch fresh. The hope is that the docks can once again attract a


large work force, this time in the offshore wind industry. For that to


happen this renewable energy consultant says more must be done


to recruit local people into the offshore jobs. Here on the Humber


we have a long tradition, our economy is largely built around the


marine industry, we have a wealth of experience and expertise in the


oil and gas sector. It needs a firm commitment from the Government to


the industry so employers can put their hand in the pocket and take


the risk of spending tens of thousands of pounds to train


somebody up to get them out there. Right now it is such an uncertain


market it is dominated by contractors, people you can bring


in and out when you need to. this industry certainty is all


about knowing how much the Government will pay for electricity


and how much electricity they actually want. After a long wait,


long-term subsidy rates were recently' nounsed. But how much


wind power the Government -- recently announced. How much wind


power the Government wants is unclear. Today they generate 3.3


gigawatts, the target for 2020 is 16 gigawatts, or 10% of the


Government's generation capacity. Beyond that the industry says


Government projections are uncertain. There is nothing


abstract about the figures. They will help determine how many UK


jobs are created. For example, at this dockyard in Hull it could be


the site of Britain's first-ever turbine factory. Seem mens have


been eying it up for the last -- sem mens have been eying it up for


the last five years. But the Government wants more clarity from


Government. At a community centre close to the site, this group are


learning what it feels like to operate a digger using a simulator.


They hope that one day they can help build the factory. Have you


heard about this promise of green jobs in the area? Yeah, I read


about it a few times in the paper. About like the wind turbine farms


and how much job opportunities it will create. But it was like a big


hype about a year ago and then it has just gone totally quiet, we


haven't heard anything else since then. When we first heard about it


I finished my apprenticeship in Brick Lane, and then I thought,


great, there will be jobs for building the factory and stuff like


that. What does all this talk of renewable mean, how important is it


to the region? This region could survive because of it. Really we


are not doing very well for ourselves. We could do a lot better.


With this it would change everything. It is not just Hull


that's hoping the factory comes, Tata Steel in Scunthorpe produces


the steel plates that end up in the turbine, they are shipped overseas


where manufacturers mould them into turbine towers. There is no


guarantee that Seimens would buy their steel from here. Tata wants


the Government to make local firms buy the supply chains. It needs to


make clear to inward investors that they have a responsibility to the


communities they are investing in. And secondly, the measures around


local content and the wider economic benefit that they bring to


the community need to be really well-defined, transparent and be


able to be reported. Newsnight understands that tomorrow's


strategy will propose that developers of large wind farms be


required to provide the Government with a detailed supply plan. In


other words, ministers are trying to link tax-payers' subsidies and


UK jobs. Some though want the Government to go further and follow


Europe's lead. Their ministers get practically involved in deals, they


actually go out there and look out for local companies, we have just


simply not had that to date from this Government. The links turbines


are getting their final check -- the links turbines are getting


their final checks by Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, who will


officially open the farm, today he spoke of an Industrial Revolution


led by the wind industry. The challenge now is to make that


revolution British. The Energy Minister, Michael Fallon,


is here. First of all you know this, you saw the flights coming in,


bringing in Danes and Swedes and Germans and so on. Why not more


British jobs for British workers? They were first into the wind farm,


all this should have started years ago, they started meeting their


renewables targets much earlier than we did. Catching up, there are


4,000 jobs already in Britain, the foundations are made in Billing ham,


and the steel work in Great Yarmouth. The strategy we are


publishing tomorrow will require new developers putting up new


turbines to have a supply chain plan that makes sure more of the


work is done in Britain. We are publishing tomorrow more incentives


for the foreign manufacturers, like Seimens to do their manufacturing,


their fabrication, their assembly, the installation work in Britain.


Do you think that would happen, the Seimens deal would be very big,


will that happen? We have worked hard to get Siemens into the Humber,


we want more assembly work done by them. It creates more jobs for the


small businesses and the rest of the supply chain. There are 4,000


at the moment. We hope to get that up to 30,000. This is the beginning


of the North Sea oil in the 1970s. Why an F-grade, confusion, lack of


leadership? We published the prices now, we brought that forward. The


industry knows the support price that will be available if they want


to invest. We have the legislation going through parliament at the


moment. I know it has been frustrating, everybody wants


clarity. We have published the prices right through to 2020, so


the industry knows the background in which it can invest, there is


more clarity and certainty now for people who want to take these


decisions. Is part of this, implicit in the film of the bar


again, we as tax-payers will pay for this, it will be clean energy,


more expensive, but that will create a lot of employment. Have


you had a figure of how many jobs? We think we can have jobs right


across the east coast of Scotland and England and all the way down,


30,000 jobs. Developments also in the Irish Sea and Scotland as well.


Around 30,000 jobs in total. There is no form of cheap, free energy.


If you want people to invest in wind turbines, like nuclear, that


has to be paid for and you have to give them some certainty they will


get their money back years ahead. The other energy question, which


has been raised, yet again today, by Lord Howell, was this question


of tracking. He said it would be appropriate in the north-east


because it is desolate there. He has apologised and said he meant


the North West. He right about the prospects for fracking and the fact


we should get on with it? We should certainly get on with it. We know


already there is probably twice as much shale gas in the north as we


originally thought. We are having another study doing done on the


second-largest basin in the south, Dorset, Sussex and Kent, we will


publish an investment in the spring. It looks like there is more shale


gas here than anybody realises. It looks like it is thicker than the


shale in the United States where there have been dramatic reductions


in people's gas bills and cost of energy for business. We don't know


if we can get it out as efficient low as cheaply as they have been


able to get it out in the United States. That is the purpose of the


explorations. You used the word "frustration" about some of the


things we have seen in Lincolnshire. There will be frustration from


those in the industry. We will get on to the environmental concerns,


but you are not getting on with the fracking quickly enough? We have


put the tax ray genome in, the planning system is simplified, we


make sure they know the permits from the Environment Agency. There


are 170 licenses out there, there is nothing stopping developers


going and exploring now, digging the exploratory we wills and asking


permission to -- well -- exploratory wells and asking


permission to do that. There is the issue of Lord Howell? He has


apologised. Shale is in the north and south, some in Scotland, some


of it all over the country. One- nation fracking we shall have?


Indeed, we are sitting on the shale, we do owe it to the next generation


to go down there and find out whether we can extract it and


whether this is a new large source of cheap energy. One final point,


while you are here. David Cameron's been asked to apologise for Peter


Cruddas, I wondered what your thoughts on that, whether he should


or not? Peter Cruddas has won his action against the Sunday Times, it


is the Sunday Times who should have been apologising, they have


libelled him badly. They should apologise. He has been dropped like


a hot potato by Mr Cameron? resigned precisely to establish


that there was no link between donations to the Conservative Party


and any influence over policy. judgment was quick by the Prime


Minister? The judgment was pretty clear that he was libelled by the


Sunday Times, it is the Sunday Times that owes him the biggest


apology of all. Thank you very much.


There have been further developments in the row about rape


threats against women on Twitter, Paul Mason has been on the case.


Let's start with the police developments first of all? The man


from South Shields, the 25-year-old arrested yesterday, after


Newsnight's investigation, identified the source, the apparent


source of one of the Twitter rape threat accounts has been released


on bail. He was arrested on suspicion of harassment. That's the


first thing. There have been more threats today? There have been more


threat. There have been more rape threats against the usual women,


there have been worryingly death threats, a specific death threat


issued against five people. Caroline Criado-Perez, the


campaigner, Stella Cerasy MP, and three other women in public life


got this today. This is car bomb outside your house, don't call the


police we will blow you up, around about now. So distressing as this


is, and ludicrous at one level, it is a crime. The police are having


to investigate these crimes. I have talked to the Metropolitan Police


today, they have spade the problem, they are certainly taking that


seriously. The problem is they are even now, only at the stage of


"scoping" the investigation into the original flurry of on-line rape


threats over the weekend. That means they don't even know how many


perpetrators there are. There is no, for example, "operation this or


that". There is no name for the operation. That is how much work


lies ahead of them. We got into last night this whole question of


how can you technically block some of the stuff, or stop it, there is


evidence yet again of how tricky this is going to be? I'm hoping


there is not a lot of our viewers who have no idea what we are


talking about. But people who can use Twitter can block people


individually. The idea is if it completes itself the best way would


be -- if it can police itself, the best way is to get together


collectively and let's make a list and throw them off, or keep them to


one side, blocked. We looked at one technology that does that last


tight night. It has been interesting -- night. It works on


levels, violent rape threats, abusers and those who are just


annoying. I have been contacted today by numerous people, internet


Twitter people who say they have been put on the annoying list, and


been through many of the serious ones but the people on the annoying


list see that as a form of harassment, because they have been


named in the same ball park as serious stuff. So it is a said/she


said situation. Why does it matter and to people watching, because the


police are asking Twitter and its users to police themselves. But it


just gets you into all kinds of confusion that I have been spending


all day today trying to get through, it is almost impossible. Last


night's Newsnight caused a bit of a stir on Twitter? It did, in the


studio there was this debate between Stella Cerasy and Toby


Young the journalist, during that debate, somebody in the Scottish


police force used the Scottish police official account to tweet


this, Stella Cerasy had called him into account about his tweet over a


female MP's breasts, I think we will let our viewers read for


themselves what the police official account said about Toby Young.


There will be somebody helping the Scottish police with their


inquiries over that. It has been withdrawn. The problem is, for all


of that, watch what you tweet. Tweet safely? But there is some


serious stuff out there. Thank you very much.


A cartoon in today's Times newspaper gives a flavour of how


Zimbabwe's election today is seen in many parts of the world, the


cartoon President Robert Mugabe says he would like to thank the


people of Zimbabwe for his election victory tomorrow. At 89 years old


he's Africa's longest-serving leader and reports that eight


million ballot papers have been printed for an license rate of just


over six million. Suggest -- a population of just over six million.


He talks about the ballot box. Robert Mugabe do swear that I will


be faithful...To Some Mugabe is the ultimate cartoon villain, a


ruthless leader who has used violence and electoral fraud to


cling to power for 33 years in Zimbabwe. He was lauded by royalty


when sworn in as the new country's leader. The former liberation


fighter like Nelson Mandela initially brought hopes of


reconciliation between black Zimbabwean and white. Within a few


years he put down a small rebellion by former guerrillas with such


violence thousands of civilians were killed. Then came the land


reclaimation programme, which saw thousands of white farmers evicted.


Their land handed to Mugabe cronies. Western sanctions followed, that


plus mismanagement brought about economic collapse. Hyperinflation


and a basket base currency. By the end of the last decade millions had


fled the country and 40% of those remaining were reliant on food aid.


Opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai stepped forward to take on the


increasing tyrannical regime. But after an organised campaign of


violence in which hundreds of his supporters were killed, injured or


jailed, he pulled out of the rigged 2008 elections. Mugabe eventually


agreed to share power, and the two men have led an uneasy coalition


since 2009. These days things appear brighter in Zimbabwe, where


the economy has stablised and today's election has been conducted


without the violence of the past. At 89 Robert Mugabe promised voting


would be free and fair he will step down if defeated. Years ago he


promised to turn the grand Government house into an orphanage,


the first of many promises he would break. Observers in Zimbabwe


reported a large turnout, with elections passing peacefully.


Morgan Tsvangirai appeared confident as he cast his vote


earlier, his party has expressed concern over alleged irregularities


on the voters' role. Counting was due to begin tonight, it is thought


the results could be close with the candidates facing the prospect of a


run-off election. I'm joined by my guests in the studio.


If Tsvangirai win, will Mugabe leave power? Tsvangirai is not


going to win the election, because there is no evidence that suggests


that he will. You need to turn the argument in slightly different ways.


Presumably you believe the people have a chance to vote. There must


be a chance for Tsvangirai to win? There isn't a chance, because the


evidence tells us something else. What does it tell you? If we look


at the pattern of the prime rows across all political parties, the


participation of members of the public at all rallies, the evidence


provided by independent pollsters not ones associated with any


political institutions, over the last year or so, they all indicate


ZANU-PF victory. That is my starting point. So the Times


cartoon is right, thank you for the victory tomorrow? The odds are


stacked against Morgan Tsvangirai, there is ballot rigging and a


campaign to manipulate the ballot with millions of extra voters,


keeping out the young voters and inflating the numbers of elderly


and rural voters more likely to support Mugabe. In 23


constituencies there is more people on the register that live there.


There is 109,000 people over 100, there is 129% of votes than should


be there. Dead people can vote? Just a month ago there is a


referendum where they went around campaigning for the yes vote. They


used the same voters' role. In the coalition Government the MDC that


knew the election would take place this month, this year, July, did


nothing to contest those figures, to contest the ballot papers. If I


could just finish. Every time the MDC makes these allegations, when


you ask them to produce the evidence that cor relates the


evidence to the claim of ballot rig, -- co-relates the evidence of the


claim of ballot rigging. It is possible the MDC will lose? If it


was a free election. It is more likely the MDC will win


convincingly. The truth is it is not just the MDC saying this, it is


independent auditors who have been through it and come up with the


same thing. Indeed when I was there, I was given internal papers


belonging to the highest levels of security explaining precisely how


they were going to rig the election, who was funding it and the


mechanisms they were using to do it. It is a total manipulation of the


register, it has gown on before? Just a minute, let me look at this,


the Catholic justice committee, not a firm friend of ZANU-PF today has


issued a statement that the election is free and fair. Others


say the same, the Chinese have said the same, the AU is saying the same.


I want to see the evidence that backs up the allegations and claims


that he this make. I haven't seen it. I printed it for you, it shows


the Chinese are helping ZANU-PF steal the election. The Chinese are


there. It is telling of the election observers allowed into the


country the UN was not allowed in the EU of not allowed in, the Jimmy


Carter Centre was not allowed in, who was allowed in? Belarus, Iran,


China, Venezuela, they are not bastions of democracy. They are the


sort of countries allowed in? need to distinguish between the


hate campaign. It is not a hate campaign, it is support for


democracy. The hate campaign against, the kind of demonisation


of the institution, that is the favourite hobby horse of western


institutions. There are 600 observer people within Zimbabwe,


they know Zimbabwe. Western diplomats are in Zimbabwe, they


know it. What is it that the west sees that the rest of Africa


doesn't see what is this claim, what is this claim? The answer is


easy to that, in 2002 you wrote that Robert Mugabe was a person


best placed to improve public services there, and to prevent HIV


AIDS from ripping through the country, five years later after the


man you supported had been in Government it had the second worst


hyper-inflation in history, it had no food in the shops, hospitals


with doors looked and the life expectancy had halved. It is not us


who are demonising Robert Mugabe, it is the people there suffering


very, very badly, and have suffered underneath him, they are the people


who are angry. In 2008, let's not forget, it was Robert Mugabe's


forces and the generals really running the country behind him who


unleashed the most hidious violence against ordinary supporters of the


MDC. You can play the argument that you have run over the last 15 years


add naus yum, in news speak we all austerity measure, they were


imposed upon Zimbabwe, in the years loading up to 20008, and they


created conditions in which the largest exit of public sector


workers left Zimbabwe. We are running out of time. It is all the


outsiders' fault? No, the reasons caused for the crisis are not by


Robert Mugabe alone. We have to ask who made the Zimbabwe economy


scream. Robert Mugabe.No the EU directors were set up to do exactly


that. You have both been very clear thank you very much. What's going


on and going wrong in Hollywood, some of the summer block busters,


Pacific Rim, Lone Ranger and After Earth, just aren't bringing the


punters to the cinema. One of America's great directors, Steven


Soderbergh, chose to make his critically acclaimed movie about


Liberace, Behind The Candelabra for American TV. Now Spike Leely is


asking his fans to fund his next -- Spike Lee is asking his fans to


fund his next movie. First a low- budget B movie from Stephen Smith.


Look at her? She's gone Hollywood. He's the same. Meet the backers of


Spike Le, he's new film, anybody, it could be you or me. Maybe not


you. The Oscar-nominated Lee is crowd-funding his new movie, some


say Joint, said to be a vampire picture. He has turned his back on


the big studio, or is it the other way round? While you weigh up


whether you fancy investing or not, here is a reminder of Lee's work.


From his debut picture, She's Gotta Have It. Are you following me.


were following me. Oh. I was. But I was minding my own business waiting


for the 41 bus when you walked by. I know it sounds corny but if I


didn't follow I might not ever see you again. Jo you are right, that


does sound corny. The lower budget film which is


swimming in and tends to get squeezed. The sorts of films we


like to make and that Spike likes to make may be more dramatic, less


obvious, if you like, in a quick sell. Almost definitely have no


sequel potential. And also are probably what we call quite a small


bullseye, you have to make a good movie to make an audience go out


and see it. Is it a coincidence that Spike Leely's passing the hat


around after a number of Hollywood big ticket summer releases


underperformed. Take Johnny Depp in the Lone Ranger, which reportedly


cost $250 million. It is not out here yet, but in the states the


Lone Ranger turned out to be all "high ho" and no silver. Taking $85


million. Never mind, let's put some actors in robot suits and have them


fight monsters and blow getting on for $200 million. What's not to


like, the takings, that is what. Pacific Rim has earned less than


half its cost, $84 million. All of Hollywood's prejudices have been


confirmed this summer. They believe very strongly in tranchiess,


sequels to existing properties, and also to films based on what they


lovingly called established properties, existing characters and


so those films, whether based on a famous character like Superman, or


a sequel, like Iron Man, Star Trek, Fast & Furious 6, Dispeckable Me,


they have done all done very well. So much so the movies are planning


aure with Superman and Batman, they announced this at a comic beacon


veings, to a thrilled audience of men with no dependants. To get a


win in Hollywood you need a man who can fly, they have two, that puts


them ahead of anybody else. Let's talk about us, if we back Spike


Leely's film, we will have our names in lights. Won't we?


investors don't get an awful lot from that. They will get


potentially, depending on the level of Government, maybe a signed DVD


or invited to the premier, or a non--speaking role. But the model


is not that they will -- non- speaking role. The model is not


that they will recoup their investment. All right Spike I'm in.


I spoke to the director Spike Lee a moment ago and asked why studios


are not putting money into Spike Lee? This particular film is not a


film they think that they can make a trillion dollars on. This is a


small, personal film, so I'm not, I want you to understand clearly I'm


not condemning Hollywood. I'm not saying I won't work with Hollywood,


the film that is coming outd in the fall Oh Boy is a studio film. Some


films they will do with me, and my more personal films they are not


going to do, he's fine, that is why I'm appealing directly to my fans,


especially the ones in the UK who have may have loved my films since


going back to 1986 with She's Gotta Have It. I have a lot of fans in


the UK. You do. But you have got to tell the fans what the film is


about? Otherwise what are they backing? This is a film about human


beings who are addicted to blood. They are not vampires, we're not


doing a black Twilight, we are not remaking the blackexploitation film,


Blacula. We can have many addictions, sex, drugs, alcohol,


power, money, this is a film, my vision about people who are


addicted to blood. And what they will do to keep living. I tell


people when they ask the question, just like you asked, I would say it


is a psychological bloody thriller, a sexy psychological bloody


thriller. How much of a risk is it to do this on Kickstarter, you have


until the end of August to race $1.25 million? We have 21 more days,


sir and my whole career has been about risk. When I was in film


school, when I was back in film school from 1979-1982, NYU graduate


film school, where Ang Lee was my classmate, there was only one


African-American working in Hollywood. Only one. So from the


very beginning I have not let risk stop me from doing what I feel I


need to do. Will you get the money? No, I'm just saying overall, in my


film career I have not let risk stop me from achieving my vision,


my goal. Do you think a young Spike Lee would make it in Hollywood


today? Even Spielberg and Lucas have said it, the industry has


changed. The world of film in 1986 where I made my first film, She's


Gotta Have It, which I raised the money myself. $175,000, it went on


to make so much at the box-office, that world has gone. I have been


doing Kickstarter before there was Kickstarter. I was writing letters,


writing postcards, making phone calls, but now there is more


technology. There is technology now, social media, so I'm using the new


tools but I was doing this way back in 1986. I self-financed my last


film, Red Hook Summer, hi to use a Kickstarter method -- I had to use


a Kickstarter method before there was Kickstarter to finish Malcolm X.


The only reason it got finished is because I had to call up personally


Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan, Bill Cosby, Oprah Winfrey, Prince, Janet


Jackson, and others who gave me the money to finish the film. Just a


final thought, in ten years time will you be making films this way?


Asking your fans do you think this is the future? I think this is


something you only do once. So I hope that with me being a success


this is a perfect example for young film makers that it can be done. It


was done before Veronica Mar s which was a cancelled TV show, they


mazeed $5.5 million, and the actor ZacBraff raised $3.5 million. They


were successes before we are doing it now. Thank you very much?Thank


you for letting me speak to the people of the UK, go Arsenal.


Thanks to Mrs Tiggy Wrinkle, the hedgehog has had a special place in


Britain, the position is now cemented, it won a national


popularity poll by BBC Wildlife, by a healthy 42%. We like hedgehogs as


In-depth investigation and analysis of the stories behind the day's headlines. With Gavin Esler.

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