Recreating Rosie Perez's Do the Right Thing Opening Dance, 30 Years Later


As of June, Do the Right Thing will have been out for 30 years, but Spike Lee’s masterpiece feels just as relevant now as it did in 1989.

The film still serves as a searing commentary on gender and race relations, starring Lee himself as Mookie, a pizza delivery man navigating the consequences of gentrification, racism, and police brutality while tensions boil over the course of one hot summer day in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn.

Everything about the movie is iconic, beginning with its four-and-a-half minute opening credits sequence, which features Rosie Perez (in her big screen debut) slaying a dance set to Public Enemy’s “Fight the Power.” What makes her legendary moves even more impressive is the knowledge that Lee apparently changed the song from “Cool Jerk” at the last minute, before filming the sequence for eight hours straight.

Jezebel decided to celebrate Do the Right Thing and Perez’s killer moves by trying our hand at recreating her credits dance, with varying degrees of success. Watch the video above for the results.

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