Passing Glory

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Passing Glory
TNT Film Poster
Directed bySteve James
Screenplay byHarold Sylvester
Produced byQuincy Jones
Magic Johnson
Harold Sylvester
StarringAndre Braugher
Rip Torn
Sean Squire
Music byStephen James Taylor
Release date
  • February 21, 1999 (1999-02-21)
Running time
100 minutes
CountryUnited States

Passing Glory is a 1999 basketball-drama film produced for TNT, written by Harold Sylvester, and directed by Steve James. It is based on a true story.

This movie stars Andre Braugher, Rip Torn, and Sean Squire, and features a speaking role by Arthur Agee, subject of the documentary Hoop Dreams, also directed by Steve James.[1] The music was composed by Stephen James Taylor.


An angry black Josephite priest (Andre Braugher) in 1960s New Orleans goes against the wishes of his parish leader (Rip Torn) as he pushes a basketball game between his unbeaten all-black team and an undefeated all-white prep school team. This is based on the true story of the first integrated basketball game in the history of New Orleans. The plot follows the events leading up to the game between the Josephites' all-black St. Augustine High School and all-white Jesuit High. It focuses on the struggles that Father Joseph Verrett had in trying to pull the game off and trying to earn respect for his team.

Hired as a history teacher, Father Perry will not let the athletes in his classes be given the special treatment that they've been used to. "I teach history," he informs the headmaster when asked to take over the suddenly vacant position of basketball coach. "I believe sports are overemphasized." Moreover, coming from the North, he can't understand why star black athletes don't go to the best white colleges, as they should. "Down here, 'should' and 'is' is a long ways apart," the dad of the team's star informs him. The film includes many tangible examples of the racism then present. The blacks have to go to a separate "coloreds only" line at fast food outlets, and ordering a meal in the wrong place can and does get you thrown in jail.


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