Spike Lee’s “Da Sweet Blood of Jesus” has been described as his Newest, Hottest film. The upcoming independent romantic horror comedy is Directed by Lee is his first to be funded through Kickstarter.Spike who describes the film as a funny, sexy, bloody and a new kind of love story is about “Human beings who are addicted to blood, it is not a Vampire movie or the remake of ‘Blacula,’” said Lee who spoke to us before the premiere on the red carpet and expressed his excitement about the film’s world premiere happening at ABFF’s Inaugural year in his home town, New York City.

ABFF’s founder Jeff Friday introduced Spike and the film on it’s closing night and thanked Lee for choosing ABFF as the first outlet for the world to see his latest work. A humbled and mutually thankful Lee thanked Friday and welcomed ABBF to New York “I hope to see the festival here for many more years to come” said Lee before asking the audience to enjoy the film and then taking his seat in the SVA Theatre.

Lee’s film which was shot between Martha’s Vineyard and New York City and completed in only 16 days stars Zaraah Abrahams and Stephen Tyrone Williams. It is a layered film that you’ll want to see more than once to appreciate all of the artistic elements. It is also an adaptation of “Ganja & Hess,” a horror film that was screened at the 1973 Cannes Film Festival and was directed by Bill Gunn. The film starred Marlene Clark and Duane Jones and follows the exploits of archaeologist Dr. Hess Green who becomes a vampire after being stabbed by his intelligent, but unstable, assistant with an ancient cursed dagger. Green falls in love with his assistant widow, Ganja, who soonafter learns Green’s dark secret.

Lee first saw the original film and fell in love with it while at Harvard. Lee’s version explores different addictions and has many metaphors that the audience is left to decipher. When asked what he wanted the audience to walk away with from the film, Lee responded: Art is art, I can’t tell you what you just saw, I can only leave it up to my audience whom are smart individuals that have to decide on their own what they saw or wanted to see for themselves.

The music in the film was very contemporary and when we asked about the soundtrack, he revealed how much of an impact new media played in his latest project. Lee formed his soundtrack via twitter. He gave new artists an opportunity to submit their best work for the soundtrack. He received over 800 music tracks from his followers, all of which he personally listened to and ultimately choose the best 12. Those artists are now not only part of a Spike Lee Joint soundtrack, but Lee took the soundtrack a step further by meeting with Antonio L.A. Reid at Epic Records and having the label release score as an album! “There’s a ton of great talent out there,” Lee reflected.

When asking Spike his hope for the film he replied “God willing and the creek don’t rise, we’ll get a distributor right here in NYC at ABFF.”

-Chasity Saunders