Designer alleges theft in ‘Oldboy’ art, reaches out to Spike Lee

Josh Brolin stars in Spike Lee's remake of "Oldboy." Credit: Film District
Josh Brolin stars in Spike Lee’s remake of “Oldboy.”
Credit: Film District

Spike Lee is no stranger to controversy, but it’s usually the kind he personally engineers. Last March, for instance, he thought he was tweeting the address of George Zimmerman, but in fact he was siccing an angry mob on an innocent older couple. What was already a shameful act became much worse. (He has been very vocal in apologizing.)

Lee’s latest brouhaha appears to only involve him tangentially. A graphic designer, Juan Luis Garcia, is alleging posters he had crafted for “Oldboy” — Lee’s latest, and a remake of the 2003 South Korean vengeance classic — were stolen from him outright. According to Garcia, the agency handling the film paid him a tiny amount for his work, but promised more if his designs were chosen. His work, as it happens, was picked (if the modified), but the agency refused to pay Garcia.

After much unpleasant dealings with the agency, which kept threatening him with lawsuits, Garcia took to the internet, crafting a letter for Lee personally. He wisely did not accuse him of theft, but placed the blame solely on the agency.

The letter spread life wildfire, eventually capturing Lee’s interest. But the filmmaker didn’t prove to be the knight in shining armor many would have liked. Over Twitter he cagily dismissed the affair:


It’s disappointing that Lee is not more sympathetic towards Garcia, and didn’t seize this opportunity to use his power to correct a wrong. On the other hand, one can make the argument that it really isn’t his problem — and maybe he’s even loath to believe Garcia’s story. It’s clear he doesn’t appreciate the responsibility being shifted to him, as though he was responsible for all the shady doings of the thousands working on his film. Certainly his characteristically strident response hasn’t won him many friends, and many headlines reporting this story now suggest Lee is involved in the alleged theft.

Still, this story is still developing. We’ll see how the agency responds, as well as how Lee responds to the response to his response.


Turkey: Voting begins in country's first direct presidential…

Some 53 million people are able to vote in the election, including 2.8 million citizens abroad. Until now, Turkish presidents were elected by parliament.


Libya seeks ceasefire as south Tripoli a militia…

By Patrick Markey and Aziz El YaakoubiTRIPOLI (Reuters) - Black plumes of smoke marked shell blasts and bulldozed earthen barricades mapped out the frontlines around…

Breaking: News

Russia mad about sanctions, says U.S. contributing to…

Russia reacted angrily on Saturday to additional sanctions imposed by the European Union over Moscow's role in the Ukraine crisis, saying they would hamper cooperation…


Mutant worms stay sober, even on alcohol

U.S. researchers have developed "mutant worms" that do not get drunk by alcohol, a breakthrough that could lead to new treatment for people trying to quit drinking


'Game of Thrones' livens up Comic Con with…

By Piya Sinha-RoySAN DIEGO (Reuters) - Laughter and death did battle on Friday at HBO's "Game of Thrones" panel at Comic Con, one of the…


Review: Brett Ratner's big 'Hercules' movie is small…

The latest "Hercules," starring Dwayne Johnson as the half-god beefcake of Greek myth, strips its hero and tale of most of its fantastical elements.


Scientists recreate world's smallest Monet copy

Scientists have reproduced a famous Impressionist painting using nano-printing, to create what has been described as the world's smallest work of art. Reworked at the…


Jerry Seinfeld is ambidextrous, and other Reddit AMA…

See some of the weirder highlights of Jerry Seinfeld's recent Reddit AMA.

U.S. Soccer

Orlando City takes shot at NYCFC over Frank…

Orlando City reminded the world how big a signing Brazilian star Kaka earlier this month with a photo of Kaka mobbed by fans juxtaposed against Lampard.


Jeremy Lin says 'Linsanity' is over as he…

Jeremy Lin lit up the NBA two years ago with his play for the Knicks but he has no desire to recreate "Linsanity" in his new career with the Lakers.


2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player…

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player rankings

U.S. Soccer

NYCFC announce signing of Frank Lampard

The tease of a big signing Thursday by new MLS side NYCFC ended up being one rumored for weeks. England midfielder Frank Lampard agreed to…


Forget Wi-Fi: Li-Fi could be the future

Li-Fi technology – developed by Mexican company Sisoft – is wireless internet connectivity using specialized LED light.


Weather app Climendo might be the most accurate…

The wait for a truly accurate weather forecast could finally be over thanks to a nifty new app called Climendo.


Napkin Table puts focus off the phone and…

Michael Jan, a design student at Tunghai University in Taiwan, has invented a serviette-picnic blanket hybrid called the Napkin Table.


Essie's new Color Boutique

Essie launches high-tech kiosks at major airports and malls across the country.