Poster for Constellation
|Directed by||Jordan Walker-Pearlman|
Shannon C. Murphy, Nancy Archuleta, Peter Kleidman, Gabe Nieto, Morris Ruskin (executive producers); Kristi N. GambleCharla Drive (line producer); Jordan Walker-Pearlman (producers)
|Written by||Jordan Walker-Pearlman|
|Starring||Billy Dee Williams
Melissa De Sousa
|Music by||Michael Bearden, Stefan Dickerson, Stanley A. Smith|
|Cinematography||John Niaga Demps|
|Editing by||Alison Learned|
|Distributed by||Codeblack Entertainment, Shoreline Entertainment|
|Running time||105 minutes|
Constellation is a film that was released by Codeblack Entertainment and 20th Century Fox in 2007. It had its French premiere in Cannes, and in Britain premiered as a special screening at the American Embassy in London.
Returning to Huntsville, Alabama—a town that once held back their opportunities but now glistens as a modern, technology-based city—the Boxer family and its extended members discover in the memory of a loved one what binds them together.
When the beloved Carmel Boxer passes away, her entire family returns to the Deep South to celebrate her life and legacy. As the Boxer family comes together for the first time in many years, revelations of Carmel's painful past begin to force each person to address their pent-up emotions and true feelings for one another. The story chronicles the lives and loves of this African-American family as its members are forced to come to terms with a tumultuous past marked by an unrequited interracial affair. The film explores the way in which the family patriarch, Helms Boxer, must confront his demons amid the changing racial fabric of society and his own family.
- Gabrielle Union – as Carmel Boxer
- Billy Dee Williams – as Helms Boxer, an artist based in Paris, France
- Zoe Saldana – as Rosa Boxer, Helms' daughter
- Hill Harper – as Errol Hickman, Rosa's ex-boyfriend
- Melissa De Sousa – as Lucy Boxer, Helms' daughter
- Lesley Ann Warren – as Nancy; Lucy's mother; Helms' ex-wife
- Rae Dawn Chong – as Jenita, Rosa's mother
- Daniel Bess – as young Bear Korngold
- David Clennon – as older Bear Korngold, Carmel's childhood love
- Ever Carradine – as Bear's niece Celeste Korngold
- Erika Coleman – as young Lucy, Helm Boxer's daughter
Constellation was filmed entirely on location in Huntsville, Alabama.
The film received mostly negative reviews. Based on 20 reviews from Rotten Tomatoes, it currently holds a 0% "Rotten" with a statement saying, "Though earnestly directed, Constellation lacks dramatic fireworks and eventually falls into TV-movie sentimentality."
However, the Los Angeles Times said in its review that the film was "highly entertaining and emotional," and that "Walker-Pearlman is adept at revealing the effect these people and others have on each other, especially on Helms, played with depth and restraint by Williams." The film won Best Independent Film of the Year at the Black Reel Awards from the Foundation for the Advancement of African-Americans in Film, made up largely of African-American film critics.