Spike Lee has been catching some major flack for the recent trailer for his upcoming film, Chi-Raq. Critics, including Chicago rapper Rhymefest, have accused the accomplished filmmaker of turning the problematic violence in Chicago into a joke with his trailer. Now Lee addresses the backlash he's received and insists that his movie is no joke.

In the clip, the 58-year-old director insists that Chi-Raq is not a comedy. Lee says that although his movie is a satire, there’s a difference between humor and comedy.

"In no way shape or form, are we not respectful of the situation that is happening in Chi-Raq,” he stated. “In no way shape or form, are we making light of the lives that have been murdered with this senseless violence.”

“Don’t get it twisted, this film is about serious business,” he continues. “There’s many films that we could look in the history of American cinema that have treated serious subject matter and had humor in them.”

Lee finished his remarks with an old adage, “I gotta laugh to keep from crying.”

“Well, I think that’s apropos with Chi-Raq,” he says. “Don’t get it twisted... don’t get it twisted.”

Lee’s Chi-Raq is a satirical film with a contemporary twist on the mythological Greek comedic tale of Lysistrata, who gets the women of ancient Greece to withhold sex from their husbands and boyfriends as a way to end the Peloponnesian War. The trailer features a group of women who decide to withhold sex from their gang-affiliated boyfriends in an effort to stop the violence in Chicago.

Spike Lee's Chi-Raq, which stars stars Samuel L. Jackson, Angela Bassett, Nick Cannon and Jennifer Hudson, will open in select theaters Dec. 4.

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