Spike Lee knows the score

Shelton Lee always had a bit of an edge. When his schoolteacher mother began calling him Spike, even he realized the nickname fit him to a T. “I was always a little different,” Lee says, laughing. “I don’t think I knew it as a kid, but it wasn’t a bad thing. I grew up in a wonderful environment filled with love, knowledge and lots of jazz.”

“Ladies First: Revelations of a Strong Woman” by Queen Latifah

In her first book, rap star-turned-actress Queen Latifah, candidly writes about her steady rise to fame, her close-knit family and and how she treated her grief with alcohol and drugs after her brother died in a motorcycle accident. At 173 very short pages (the type is huge and the margins generous), readers are entertained and, to a certain extent, enlightened. But they never get the feeling that they have gotten to know the artist.

Wesley Snipes learns it’s a `Jungle’ out there

There’s a scene in Spike Lee’s new film, “Jungle Fever,” that hit a little too close to home for Wesley Snipes. The lovers portrayed by him and co-star Annabella Sciorra are engaged in a playful embrace that a police officer mistakes as a black man raping a white woman. Snipes’ character gets a gun put to his head.