Love & Basketball
|Love & Basketball|
|Directed by||Gina Prince-Bythewood|
|Produced by||Andrew Z. Davis
|Written by||Gina Prince-Bythewood|
|Music by||Terence Blanchard|
|Editing by||Terilyn A. Shropshire|
|Studio||40 Acres and a Mule Filmworks|
|Distributed by||New Line Cinema|
|Release dates||April 21, 2000|
|Running time||124 minutes|
Love & Basketball is a 2000 American romantic drama film starring Omar Epps and Sanaa Lathan. The film tells the story of Quincy McCall (Epps) and Monica Wright (Lathan), two next-door neighbors in Los Angeles, California who are pursuing their basketball careers before eventually falling for each other. The film was produced by 40 Acres and a Mule Filmworks, and marks the directing debut of screenwriter Gina Prince-Bythewood.
- Sanaa Lathan as Monica Wright
- Omar Epps as Quincy McCall
- Alfre Woodard as Camille Wright
- Dennis Haysbert as Zeke McCall, Quincy's father
- Debbi Morgan as Mona McCall, Quincy's mother
- Harry J. Lenix as Nathan Wright
- Kyla Pratt as Young Monica
- Glenndon Chatman as Young Quincy
- Boris Kodjoe as Jason
- Gabrielle Union as Shawnee
- Monica Calhoun as Kerry
- Regina Hall as Lena Wright
- Tyra Banks as Kyra
- Gina Prince-Bythewood – director and screenwriter
- Sam Kitt – producer
- Spike Lee – producer
- Reynaldo Villalobos – cinematographer
- Terence Blanchard – composer (music score)
- Terilyn A. Shropshire – editor
- Jeffrey Howard – production designer
- Andrew Z. Davis – executive producer
- Cynthia Guidry – executive producer
- Jay Stern – executive producer
- Ruth E. Carter – costume designer
- Dolby Digital – sound and sound design
- Aisha Coley – casting
From August 1999 to October 1999
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Love & Basketball is the soundtrack to the film, released April 18, 2000, on Overbrook Entertainment and New Line Records. Production for the album came from several recording artists, including Raphael Saadiq, Angie Stone, Zapp, and Steve "Silk" Hurley. In the US, the album peaked at number 45 on the Billboard 200 and number 15 on R&B/Hip-Hop Albums. Stacia Proefrock of Allmusic gave the album a three-of-five star review, saying "Songs like MeShell Ndege'ocello's 'Fool of Me' help punctuate this story of childhood friends who love each other almost as much as they love the game of basketball. Other highlights of the soundtrack include songs from MC Lyte, Al Green, and Rufus."
Love & Basketball was released in the United States on April 21, 2000.
Love & Basketball received generally favorable reviews from film critics. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, the film received an average score of 70, based on 28 reviews, which indicates "generally favorable". At Rotten Tomatoes, which is similar to Metacritic, the film received an aggregated score of 82%, based on 87 reviews stating, "Confident directing and acting deliver an insightful look at young athletes." Film reviewer Lisa Schwarzbaum of Entertainment Weekly gave Love & Basketball an A- review. She enjoyed how the film portrayed women's sports in general and says "The speed and wiliness of the game itself ensure that movies about men who shoot hoops are exciting, but the novelty of watching women bring their own physical grace to the contest is a turn-on." Schwarzbaum also appreciated Prince-Bythewood's directing skills, claiming "[She] is also vigilant and honest about the hard sacrifices made in pursuit of sexual equality. And for that, she scores big in her first pro game."
Rachel Deahl of AllRovi gave the film 3.5 out of 5 stars. In her review she complimented Epps and Lathan on their performances, and said, "Love & Basketball serves as a somber reminder of how few films exist (much less love stories, much less ones that focus on the female perspective) about multi-dimensional African-American characters outside the ghetto." Film critic Desson Howe of The Washington Post's Entertainment Guide wrote, "Love and Basketball had moments of such tenderness and sophistication, complimented [sic] by such romantic dreaminess between lead performers Omar Epps and Sanaa Lathan. First-time filmmaker Gina Prince-Bythewood's film joins such films as The Best Man and The Wood, which look for the class, not the crass, in African American life." Howe gave the film a favorable review.
New York Post film critic Jonathan Foreman gave the film a mixed review; he appreciated how the film "effectively conveys the excitement of basketball from a player's point of view", but says it's filled with fake-sounding dialogue you only find in the cheesiest TV movies." Roger Ebert, film critic of the Chicago Sun-Times, says "The film is not as taut as it could have been, but I prefer its emotional perception to the pumped-up sports clichés I was sort of expecting. It's about the pressures of being a star athlete; the whole life, not the game highlights. I'm not sure I quite believe the final shot, though. I think the girl suits up for the sequel." Ebert gave the film three out of four stars. Robert Wilonsky of the Dallas Observer gave the film a negative review, saying, "[it] is a film built upon transitions so weak and obvious it's astonishing the entire thing doesn't collapse on itself. You want to root for it, as you would any rookie underdog, but it offers nothing to cheer for." He also elaborates on the bad acting, stating "Omar Epps possesses a chiseled body and a blank stare [...] Lathan is only slightly better, but she's stuck in a hollow role."
Love & Basketball was released in North America on April 21, 2000 to 1,237 theaters. It grossed $3,176,000 its first day and ending its North American weekend with $8,139,180, which was the second-highest grossing movie of the April 21–23, 2000 weekend, only behind U-571. Love & Basketball grossed $27,459,615 in the United States, which is ninth all-time for a basketball film and thirty-seventh all-time for a sports drama. The film grossed $27,728,118 worldwide; $268,503 (1%) was grossed outside of the United States.
|2001||Sanaa Lathan||Best Actress||Won|
|2001||Love & Basketball||Best Film||Won|
|Love & Basketball||Best Film Poster||Won|
|Love & Basketball||Best Soundtrack||Won|
|Sanaa Lathan||Theatrical – Best Actress||Won|
|Gina Prince-Bythewood||Theatrical – Best Director||Won|
|"Fool of Me" (Meshell Ndegeocello)||Best Song||Won|
|2000||Love & Basketball||Sundance Film Category||Won|
|2000||Gina Prince-Bythewood||Best First Screenplay||Won|
|2001||D. Stevens||Best Drama Poster||Won|
|2001||Sanaa Lathan||Outstanding Actress in a Motion Picture||Won|
|Alfre Woodard||Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture||Won|
- Prince-Bythewood, Gina (Director) (2000). Love & Basketball (DVD). Los Angeles, CA: New Line Cinema.
- "Love & Basketball – Cast and Crew". AllRovi. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved January 28, 2012.
- "Love & Basketball (Soundtrack) – Original Soundtrack > Overview". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved February 2, 2012.
- "Love & Basketball (Soundtrack) – Original Soundtrack > Credits". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved February 2, 2012.
- "Love & Basketball (Soundtrack) – Original Soundtrack > Charts & Awards > Billboard Albums". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved January 28, 2012.
- Proefrock, Stacia. "Love & Basketball (Soundtrack) – Original Soundtrack > Review". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved February 2, 2012.
- Deahl, Rachel. "Love & Basketball – Review". AllRovi. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved January 28, 2012.
- "Love & Basketball Reviews, Ratings, Credits, and More". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved January 27, 2012.
- "Love and Basketball". Rotten Tomatoes. Flixster. Retrieved January 27, 2012.
- Schwarzbaum, Lisa (April 28, 2000). "Movie Review: Love * Basketball (2000)". Entertainment Weekly. CNN. Retrieved February 2, 2012.
- Howe, Desson (April 21, 2000). "'Love and Basketball': A Winning Team". The Washington Post. Retrieved January 27, 2012.
- Foreman, Jonathan. "It Shoots, It Misses". New York Post. Archived from the original on December 10, 2000.
- Ebert, Roger (April 21, 2000). "Love & Basketball". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved January 27, 2012.
- Wilonsky, Robert. "Foul Shots: All's So-so in the Off-the-mark Hoop Drama Love & Basketball". Dallas Observer. Archived from the original on February 23, 2001.
- "Love & Basketball (2000)". Box Office Mojo. IMDb. Retrieved October 18, 2008.
- "Weekend Box Office Results for April 21–23, 2000". Box Office Mojo. IMDb. Retrieved January 27, 2012.
- "Love and Basketball (2000) – Awards". IMDb. Retrieved January 25, 2012.
- "Black Reel Awards (2001)". IMDb. Retrieved January 25, 2012.
- "Past Winners: Sundance Winners". Humanitas Prize. Retrieved February 5, 2012.
- "Love & Basketball > Awards". AllRovi. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved January 25, 2012.
- "2001 NAACP Image Awards". Infoplease. Retrieved January 25, 2011.
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