CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story

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CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story
CrazySexyCool The TLC Story.jpg
Promotional poster
Directed by Charles Stone III
Produced by Bill Diggins
Rozonda "Chilli" Thomas
Tionne "T-Boz" Watkins
Keri Flint
Kate Lanier
Maggie Malina
Rick Krim
Alexander A. Mortlagh
Jill Holmes
Jeff Olde
Written by Kate Lanier
Story by Kate Lanier
Based on TLC
Narrated by Keke Palmer
Drew Sidora
Starring Keke Palmer
Niatia "Lil Mama" Kirkland
Drew Sidora
Music by Jay Wadley
Cinematography Eric Maddison
Editing by John Roberts
Production company POP Films
VH1 Productions
Country United States
Language English
Original channel VH1
Release date
  • October 21, 2013 (2013-10-21)

CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story is a 2013 American television biographical film about the R&B and hip hop musical trio TLC. It derives its title from the title of the group's second album, CrazySexyCool. The film stars Keke Palmer as Rozonda "Chilli" Thomas, Niatia "Lil Mama" Kirkland as Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes and Drew Sidora as Tionne "T-Boz" Watkins.[1] The film was directed by Charles Stone III and written by Kate Lanier.[2] Thomas and Watkins also served as executive producers of the film.[3]

The film premiered on VH1 on October 21, 2013.[4] TLC released a compilation album, 20, released by LaFace and Epic Records on October 15, 2013, marking both the band's 20-plus year in entertainment business and the release of CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story which largely inspired the tracklisting for 20.[5] Next to their four number-one singles "Creep", "Waterfalls", "No Scrubs" and "Unpretty" plus a new track written by singer Ne-Yo, "Meant to Be".[6]

The film's premiere generated 4.5 million viewers, making it the highest-rated television film premiere of 2013, as well as the highest-rated original film premiere in VH1 history.[7][8]

Chilli confirmed on Twitter that the film will be released on DVD on October 21, 2014.[9][10]


The film begins with Tionne Watkins (Drew Sidora) narrating, telling about the girls' lives as children and summarizing their story. The film then jumps to the year 1990 in Atlanta, Georgia. Tionne is approached by her friend, Marie, who informs her about a girl group being formed by Ian Burke and persuades her to audition for LaFace Records. Tionne brings Crystal (Brooke Montalvo), the founder of the group, to see Lisa Lopes (Lil Mama) perform and Crystal says that she will be perfect for the group. After singing "Meeting in the Ladies Room", they received a mixed reception. (most in part due to Crystal's ill-fated off key performance) However, both Tionne and Lisa garner interest from both Perri "Pebbles" Reid (Rochelle Aytes) and her husband, co-founder of LaFace L.A. Reid (Carl Anthony Payne II). After receiving the good news from both Pebbles and L.A. Reid, Lisa decides that she should call her family and tell them the great news, especially her father, who told her that she would never make it as a rapper. She calls her family only to learn that her father was shot and killed.

The film jumps ahead to a dance class where we see Rozonda dancing. Rozonda sees Pebbles walk in and talk to her teacher. She asks one of the other girls why Pebbles was there. The girl tells her about Pebbles looking for another girl for a girl group. Rozanda rushes over and immediately talks to Pebbles and when her dance teacher tells her to go back, she starts singing, amazing everyone listening. Pebbles brings Rozonda to meet Lisa and Tionne, the girls become fast friends and start working on their audition with L.A. Reid. During the rehearsal, Pebbles notices Rozonda eying Dallas Austin, the producer of the album. She pulls all the girls aside and tells them that they will not cuss or be "loose", this seems to rub Rozonda and Tionne the wrong way, but they get back to work. At the audition, L.A. gives them a green light to go ahead and cut their first video and record. Pebbles takes the girls out to lunch to sign the contracts telling them that they had a stipend and would only get paid when they sold records and tickets to shows.

During a studio session Pebbles leaves the girls to attend a meeting. She tells Dallas to keep the girls working, but instead a fun food fight breaks out between the girls and Dallas. Dallas chases Chilli into one of the sound booths and proceeds to kiss her. After re-entering the studio Pebbles sees the two lip-locked lovers and begins to reprimand the girls and Dallas for their behavior while she was gone. She then pulls Chilli into the dressing room and tells her that she is suspended for three weeks without pay and that she may or may not get her job back. Pebbles tells Chilli to leave the studio and says that she has a lot of thinking to do.

Pebbles goes and talks to Tionne and Lisa who both tell her that they want Chilli to stay. Pebbles still insists on putting out an advertisement on the radio about the auditions to see if there is another singer who fits the vision she has for the group. Tionne and Lisa sit through a day of auditioners. During the auditions an upset Chilli is with Dallas, who comforts her by kissing her, which leads to them making love. After three weeks of auditions, Pebbles decides to let Chilli stay in the group. Lisa and Tionne call Chilli to tell her that she is back in the group and that everything will go according to plan. Right after Chilli gets that call she looks down at a pregnancy test that she has just taken and it is positive. She tells Dallas and Dallas says that he will support her in whatever decision she makes. Chilli decides that it's best that she get an abortion because of the fragile state her career is in. Tionne and Lisa come to visit Chilli after the operation to cheer her up. After Chilli has recovered they are seen working on their first music videos for their songs "Ain't 2 Proud 2 Beg" and "Baby-Baby-Baby".

After the girls return home from their first tour they receive their platinum records for 1 million copies sold of their first album and they receive their brand new cars, but still wonder where the rest of the money is. The girls begin working on their second album "CrazySexyCool" when they start to wonder where all of the money is going. They go to their attorney so that they could go over their contracts, only to find out that their attorney works for Pebbles. The attorney tells them that L.A. Reid has all their money and they are to only get a stipend while the rest goes into an account so that they don't spend it all. They go talk to L.A. and tell him that they don't want Pebbles on their second album because they want more artistic freedom. L.A. tells them that since Pebbles owns the trademarks and copyrights of the name TLC they would either have to buy her out or change their name. They decide to buy her out in order to achieve the creative freedom that they needed. Pebbles ended up suing the girls for damages.

Assuming that this new creative freedom would come with more rights to their money, they went ahead and recorded their second album. After receiving awards and other acknowledgements they still didn't see any money come in. So they went to speak with L.A. who told them that he wasn't in control of the money, that Clive Davis (Ed Amatrudo) had all their money and that they needed to speak with him. The girls banded a group together to go storm the record label's building to speak with Clive, who was in the middle of a meeting with Sean "Diddy" Combs. Davis told the girls that they would get the attorneys and the accountants in a meeting and see what the record label owed them. They all were cut small checks.

The group then filed bankruptcy and found a new manager.



  1. ^ Black, Elizabeth (February 19, 2013). "Keke Palmer, Lil Mama And Drew Sidora Round Out The Cast Of Crazy, Sexy, Cool: The TLC Story | Reality TV + Gossip | VH1 Blog". Retrieved October 18, 2013. 
  2. ^ "[VIDEO] VH1's 'CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story' Teaser". The Deadline. Retrieved August 1, 2013. 
  3. ^ Kennedy, Gerrick D. (July 25, 2013). "VH1 debuts trailer for 'CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story' [Updated". Retrieved August 1, 2013. 
  4. ^ "Relive TLC's Pop Star Heyday In VH1's 'CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story' Teaser Trailer (VIDEO)". July 25, 2013. Retrieved August 1, 2013. 
  5. ^ "TLC Unveils Cover, Tracklisting for New Album '20'". September 23, 2013. Retrieved October 22, 2013. 
  6. ^ "TLC Boil Down Their 20-Year Run Into Three Words". October 15, 2013. Retrieved October 22, 2013. 
  7. ^ Asare, Andrew (October 22, 2013). "VH1's 'CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story' scores big in ratings Danae". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved October 22, 2013. 
  8. ^ Kondolojy, Amanda (October 22, 2013). "'CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story' Draws 4.5 Million Total Viewers, Scores as Cable's Highest-Rated Original Movie of 2013". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved October 24, 2013. 
  9. ^ ""CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story" on DVD This Year?". CyberTLCWorld. June 26, 2014. Retrieved June 26, 2014. 
  10. ^ ""CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story" To Be Released On DVD October 21!". CyberTLCWorld. July 24, 2014. Retrieved July 24, 2014. 

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