Giancarlo Esposito Shows Spike Lee ‘La Dolce Vita’ in New Fiat Commercial

Mookie and Buggin’-Out back together again. We love to see it. Filmmaker, artist, tastemaker, and thespian Spike Lee has reunited with “School Daze” and “Do The Right Thing” brethren Giancarlo Esposito in a recent spot for Fiat’s new all-electric Fiat 500e. The commercial is entitled “Italy in America” and sees Esposito, whose father hails from Naples, introducing Lee to “la dolce vita”. In a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter marking the reunion, Lee and Esposito reflected on their friendship and collaborations, their shared appreciation for Italian culture, and various film projects on approach.

“This is a natural fit,” Lee said of working with Esposito on the project after years apart. “When you’re close, especially in this industry, there might be Spike the love, but there are schedules and delays that prevent working together again. But we have a bond. It’s been announced that I’m going to do my new film with [Denzel Washington], the fifth one after ‘Mo’ Better Blues’, ‘Malcolm X’, ‘He Got Game’, ‘Inside Man’. ‘Inside Man’ was 16 years ago, but for Denzel and I, it was like yesterday. That’s the same thing here with my brother.”

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Speaking on how his parents met and fell in love while working at the Teatro di San Carlo in Napoli and how he was raised in Rome, Esposito added, “This [commercial] was a no brainer for me to represent my Italian people who are just absolutely incredible human beings and truly great with everything from automobiles to leather handbags to music. To me, again, they represent the best parts of me.”

“The Lees, we were the first Black family to move into a neighborhood in Brooklyn, New York called Cobble Hill,” Lee said when asked about his own connection to Italian culture. “It was mostly Italian Americans, right by the dock. The dock workers bought homes in Cobble Hill, so we were the first. A lot of the stuff you see in the film ‘Do the Right Thing’, and later in ‘Summer of Sam’, came from my experiences growing up being the only Black family in an Italian American neighborhood in Brooklyn.”

As the conversation turned towards Giancarlo’s involvement in Francis Ford Coppola’s upcoming sci-fi epic “Megalopolis,” Esposito called it, “Really an incredible experience. One of the highlights of my career. I worked with Francis back on ‘The Cotton Club’. Working with him on ‘Megalopolis’ all these years later just showed his vision for the world. It’s a very, very special film. I find him to be a genius.”

Watch the Spike Lee-directed spot for Fiat below.

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