Originally Published: October 11, 2004
OHN SINGLETON has been trying for some time to independently produce projects
under his own banner. He’s finally is getting the chance with HUSTLE & FLOW, first-time writer/director CRAIG BREWER’s film about
a small town rapper trying to make it to the big time. In doing so, the
innovative young wannabe inlists help from a variety of folks in his local community
to help him see his dreams come true.
Producer STEPHANIE ALLAIN feels that Brewer is a voice of the new South. More
and more, filmmakers are being given opportunities to tell their stories
on larger scale productions. Singleton himself had that opportunity with BOYZ
N THE HOOD, and now he is helping mentor filmmakers like Brewer,
and give them a chance to tell original stories about people in communities
that would not otwherwise be seen.
The cast includes ANTHONY ANDERSON, who gained unwanted publicity for
the production recently by being arrested and charged with sexual harrassment,
TARYN MANNING, DJ QUALLS, TARAJI HENSON, PAULA PARKER,
ELISE NEAL and rapper LUDACRIS who plays SKINNY BLACK, a famous rapper
who comes to town who is about to get the “hustle” of his life.
Key production personnel include KEITH BRIAN BURNS, who is handling production
design duties. Burns also worked with Singleton previously on projects including
2 FAST 2 FURIOUS. PAUL SIMMONS (DEAD PRESIDENTS) is handling costume design.
AMY VINCENT (EVE’S BAYOU) serves as director of photography and BILLY
FOX is cutting the film. Fox also edited HBO’s BAND OF BROTHERS.
In addition to BOYZ N THE HOOD and 2 FAST 2 FURIOUS, JOHN SINGLETON’s directing credits include POETIC JUSTICE, the SHAFT remake and ?????list
others. Many of his previous efforts have been independent minded films,
but this is his first truly independent venture, produced under his New
Deal Entertainment, in association with Crunk Pictures/ Homegrown Pictures.
CRAIG BREWER got his start with video camera in hand, with casts that
included his brother. His award winning THE POOR AND HUNGRY, got him much
acclaim in 2000 and was shot using Mini DV cameras.
HUSTLE AND FLOW features music known as crunk, or Southern hip-hop.
Memphis rappers THREE 6 MAFIA and AL CAPONE wrote and produced tracks for the
film that were recorded by HOWARD AND HENSON. LUDACRIS will executive produce
the soundtrack and release it under his own label.
Check out the film library for more on HUSTLE & FLOW