Spike Lee film shows New Orleans 5 years after storm

Tue Aug 17, 2010 3:28pm EDT
 
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By Matthew Bigg

ATLANTA (Reuters) - Five years ago, Hurricane Katrina swept infants out of their mothers' arms, filled whole neighborhoods with dirty water, flooded schools and hospitals and turned New Orleans into a byword for disaster.

What happened next?

The question is at the heart of Emmy Award-winner Spike Lee's new film "If God is Willing and Da Creek Don't Rise", a two-part, four-hour documentary on New Orleans and the Gulf coast set to haunting music.

It will debut on the HBO network on August 23 and 24, just days before the fifth anniversary of the storm that killed more than 1,800 people, caused billions of dollars of damage to the Gulf coast and tarred President George W. Bush with accusations of failure to mount a swift rescue effort.

The film is a sequel to "When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts", a 2006 film showered with awards and praised for the raw drama of its depiction of the storm and its aftermath.

"The story wasn't done at the end of "When the Levees Broke" and the story's still not done at the end of "If God is Willing and Da Creek Don't Rise," Lee told Reuters.

"We wanted (the second film) to continue the story, which is a great part of America's history," he said.

Lee, an Academy Award nominee, is famous for movies such as "Do the Right Thing" about race relations in America and for characters whose dialogue is so sharp it sounds like it could not have been scripted in advance.   Continued...

 
<p>An undated publicity photograph from director Spike Lee's new film "If God is Willing and Da Creek Don't Rise", a two-part, four-hour documentary on New Orleans and the Gulf coast which will debut on the HBO network on August 23, 2010, just days before the fifth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina that killed more than 1,800 people, caused billions of dollars of damage to the Gulf coast. The film is a sequel to "When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts", a 2006 film showered with awards and praised for the raw drama of its depiction of the storm and its aftermath. REUTERS/Charely Varney/HBO/Handout</p>