How Spike Lee, John Singleton, and John Ridley Left Their Marks on the 25th Anniversary of the Los Angeles Riots

How Spike Lee, John Singleton, and John Ridley Left Their Marks on the 25th Anniversary of the Los Angeles Riots
This year, the April 29 anniversary of the Rodney King riots became a recognized event on the programming calendar. Over the next week, networks are releasing a half-dozen nonfiction narratives to commemorate the 25 years since the Los Angeles uprising, including three from some of our most compelling African-American filmmakers: Spike Lee, John Singleton, and John Ridley.

“Black directors have different viewpoints,” said Lee, who directed writer-actor Roger Guenveur Smith’s one-man show “Rodney King” for Netflix. “We don’t see the world all the same.”

Read More: L.A. Riots 25th Anniversary Documentaries, Ranked: Which Ones Best Explain the Unrest Now

Ridley and Singleton took a more traditional path to the material, digging into period video archives and interviewing many of the people directly involved in the riots that yielded 55 lives lost, 1,100 buildings destroyed by fire, and some $1 billion in property damage.

Lee came at the subject from another direction. Smith has
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