Earlier this week, Dame Dash took to his Instagram to call out Lee Daniels, whom Dame allegedly loaned $2 million to fund 2005's Shadowboxer. Daniels, who has gone on to direct big projects like Precious, The Butler, and the TV show Empire, has never paid Dame back, and Dame is now ready to take him to court. In a new interview with TMZ, Daniels spoke out about the situation and revealed more details, like why he took this long to realize he needed to pay Dame back.
Daniels said Dame’s public confrontation at a Diana Ross concert made him “uncomfortable” but he also realized Dame was “hurt,” which made him think. In particular, it seems he thought about what Dame did for him. “After my unprecedented Academy Award with Halle Berry, nobody [in Hollywood] was giving me money,” Daniels said. “Damon’s crazy ass was crazy enough to give me money for The Woodsman and for Shadowboxer." Daniels calls the money an “investment,” but it seems clear Dame considered it a loan.
Daniels acknowledges that it “sadly” took that public “wake-up call” to realize the contributions Dame had made to his career and how much he owes him. “He believed in me the nobody else did, and for that he deserves it,” Daniels said. "This black man gave me money when nobody would."
Dame has sued Daniels for $5 million, which accounts for the original $2 million plus interest. Daniels appears unconcerned and confident they’ll “squash it,” adding, “I feel good about it, he needs it right now and I'm happy to help him, 'cause he was helping me."