Based on a true story, Spike Lee’s forthcoming BlacKkKlansman follows John David Washington’s Ron Stallworth, the first Black Colorado Springs officer who successfully went undercover to infiltrate the Ku Klux Klan, ultimately becoming the leader of its local chapter and gaining the trust of Grand Wizard David Duke (Topher Grace). Lester Holt interviewed the real-life Stallworth tonight’s NBC Nightly News and he shared an interesting conversation that he recently had with the Grand Wizard-turned-politician.
In the clip of the interview (which you can watch below), Stallworth sits with Lee as he talks with Holt about a recent surprise phone call he received from Duke.
“He wanted to talk about the fact that he’s concerned about how he’s going to be portrayed in this film,” said Stallworth. “He’s only seen the trailer and in the trailer, it makes him off to be a buffoonish cartoonish idiot.”
Holt asked if that was a fair description which Stallworth responded,”In some areas, yeah. Spike made him look kind of stupid, but he was stupid in how this whole thing transpired 40 years ago.”
And in a surprise twist, Stallworth said that Duke complimented Spike. “He said I’ve always respected Spike Lee. Which surprised the heck out of me,” he said.
“That’s a compliment I don’t need,” laughed Lee.
Watch the video clip below.