Mayor Emanuel Disapproves of "Chiraq" Movie Title | NBC Chicago
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Mayor Emanuel Disapproves of "Chiraq" Movie Title

Lee says the film will focus on "black-on-black violence" in Englewood

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    Chicago mayor says he had an "honest, frank" discussion about title of upcoming film that some say is "offensive." NBC Chicago's Lauren Jiggetts reports. (Published Wednesday, April 15, 2015)

    Mayor Rahm Emanuel expressed his disapproval of the working title of the upcoming Spike Lee film "Chiraq" during a City Council meeting Wednesday.

    The mayor said he spoke with Lee and told him that he opposed the title, but not the film itself, which will reportedly focus on violence in Chicago, specially in the Englewood neighborhood.

    "We had an honest, frank conversation," Emanuel said. "He said that while the movie is about the neighborhood of Englewood, I said that I was not happy about the title."

    Emanuel also said the two agreed that violence was not confined to Chicago, but also Philadelphia, Baltimore and New York, including the part of Brooklyn where Lee grew up.

    While the mayor said he supports the film for confronting the issue of violence in Chicago, he does not like the characterization of the city as a war zone.

    "I told him (Lee) also that there are very good people that live in Englewood who are raising their family," Emanuel said. "There's a lot of positive things."

    The film could possibly star several big-name celebrities, including Kanye West, Common, Jeremy Piven and Samuel L. Jackson, according to The Wrap. AmazonStudios, Hollywood's newest studio, is producing the film.

    Details on the film's plot have not yet been released, but Emanuel said Lee told him he wants to focus on "black-on-black violence," particularly among African-American men.

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