'Red Hook Summer'
"We've got baseball bats," Spike Lee says with a menacing cackle, offering an explanation for the airtight lid those in his circle kept on his newest "joint"; word on Red Hook Summer came out only after the acclaimed director tweeted about it. The film, which Lee is calling the fifth installment in his "ongoing chronicle of Brooklyn," is soulful: It centers around a Southern boy who visits a Brooklyn housing project and deals with a crazy-eyes preacher-of-a grandfather hell-bent on saving him. So Lee emphasized its music, enlisting time-tested pianist Bruce Hornsby to write the score, and also featuring 10 songs from unsigned crooner Judith Hill, a This Is It backup singer who performed at Michael Jackson’s memorial service. Hornsby, a longtime collaborator of Lee’s – he most recently scored the director’s ESPN documentary Kobe Doin’ Work – appreciated his boss’ uncharacteristically hands-off approach. "I would send the music and [Spike] would find the place for it," Hornsby says. "It was quite enjoyable."