Spike Lee, the short, chubby, bespectacled and excitable mascot who entertains Knicks fans courtside at every game, is planning to direct a movie.
"Most people look at a sports mascot and assume all it does is wear funny outfits and jump around and cheer," said Spike Lee. "But I have other interests. I very much like making movies. Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to fire some promotional t-shirts into the crowd with this t-shirt cannon," he added.
While it's rare for a mascot to direct a film, Spike Lee would not be the first. The San Diego Chicken directed small, experimental, art house movies in the late '70s, while the Phillie Phanatic infamously directed and appeared in many furry fetish movies before getting his mascot break with the Philadelphia Phillies. Spike Lee also insists he has directed movies before, but research into box office numbers for the past five years do not back up that claim.
Many within the Knicks organization admit concern that Spike Lee is not focusing on what matters.
"Everyone is excited about this team," said team owner James Dolan. "But just because we won a few games doesn't mean it's time for all of to get a bunch of side projects going. Let's win a championship first and then all of that other stuff will come. I just have a problem with our mascot directing a movie when he continues to be apprehensive about dunking off of a trampoline through a ring of fire during timeouts. Other mascots do it, why not him?"
Spike Lee's movie does not yet have a production company, but the story focuses on the simmering tensions of one Knicks game when the fans are disappointed by the performance of Carmelo Anthony, forcing the team mascot into a difficult situation. The film is titled "Boo the Right Thing."