OMG! School Daze FIGHT Between LIGHT & DARK Skin Actors Was REAL! Details

Posted On : March 29, 2016

fb school daze4The 80’s film, School Daze, was about college life on a predominately Black college campus, “Mission College,” but it was also about the ever-present stereotypes and stigmas that still plague society today in regards to skin complexion, race and hair. Well the truth of the matter is that director, Spike Lee, did a great job recreating that tension not just on-camera, but off-camera as well. In order for him to get the best out of the actors, he wanted to create a real life atmosphere that may spark some tension between those who played the high-sadity “Wanna-be” characters and those who played the self-aware, “JigaBoo” characters, so he did something about it.

SCHOOL DAZE, Jasmine Guy, 1988 © Colombia Pictures/
SCHOOL DAZE, Jasmine Guy, 1988 © Colombia Pictures/

Spike separated the actors’ living quarters throughout the duration of filming. He had the “Wanna-Be” actors stay in a higher end hotel and the “JigaBoo” actors stay in a less extravagant hotel without as many accommodations and frills.
spike tina and rachel

And that is where the REAL-LIFE tension was probably bred. So much so, that the fight scene we saw during the “Daddy Long Stroke” chant that “Dap” (Laurence Fishburne) and his boys were performing at the Greek show was as REAL as a hundred dollar bill! That’s right, when “Dap” and the fellas started chanting “So just get back, or we’ll kick your Gamma a$$” to the “Gamma Phi Gamma” fraternity, things got really real. A fight broke out between the actors -that was NOT in the script- and Spike apparently told the camera crew to keep filming as the fight continued. Kadeem Hardison revealed that the by the time the step show scene was filmed, the off-camera tension was already on level 10, so all it took was for actor/musician, Branford Marsalis, to playfully grab Tisha Campbell’s hair in the scene for all hell break lose between the light skin versus the dark skin actors as they were exiting the stage during the step show scene. As you can see, they kept that chaotic scene in the movie. That is crazy right?!! LOL.

Check out the fight below and see if you can tell where it got real at…

We can only imagine that some of that animosity in that sing-off between the “JigaBoos” and “WannaBes” in the hair salon was real too.

Some may view Spike’s methods as unconventional and that’s understandable, but he was trying to create true friction off camera so that it would seem authentic once he yelled “Action.” Tisha Campbell admitted in an interview that she didn’t understand why Spike was being so “cruel” at the time, but after seeing the finished product, which has now become a cult classic, she probably understands now and so do I. There hasn’t been another Black college movie that has been able to touch School Daze yet, although there have been several who tried to step into that arena. So good lookin’ out Spike, School Daze has left a lasting impression on the hearts of millions, which means a job well done.

-ILoveOldSchoolMusic, old school news with a new point of view
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