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Mo' Better Blues ()


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Jazz trumpeter Bleek Gilliam makes questionable decisions in his professional and romantic lives.

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Bleek Gilliam
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Giant
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Shadow Henderson (Sax)
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Left Hand Lacey (Piano)
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Butterbean Jones
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Indigo Downes
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Bottom Hammer (Bass)
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Moe Flatbush
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Big Stop Williams
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Clarke Bentancourt
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Josh Flatbush
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Rhythm Jones (Drums)
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Madlock
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Rod
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Eggy (as Charles Q. Murphy)
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Born Knowledge
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Petey
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Lillian Gilliam
Linda Hawkins ...
Jeanne
Raye Dowell ...
Rita
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Cora
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Roberto
Zakee Howze ...
Young Bleek / Miles (as Zakee L. Howze)
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Tyrone
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Joe (as Raymond Thomas)
Sheldon Turnipseed ...
Benny
Christopher Skeffrey ...
Louis
Terrence Williams ...
Sam
Darryl M. Wonge Jr. ...
Miles at Birth
Jelani Asar Snipes ...
Miles, Age 1
Glenn Williams III ...
Miles, Age 3
Arnold Cromer ...
Miles, Age 5
Leon Addison Brown ...
Smith
Scot Anthony Robinson ...
Cooley
Herbert Daughtry ...
Minister
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Father of the Bride
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Party Guest
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Jimmy the Busboy (as Douglas Bourne)
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Club Patron
John Canada Terrell ...
Club Patron
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Club Patron
Carol M. Wiggins ...
Club Patron
Isabella ...
Club Patron
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Club Patron
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Big Stop's Friend
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Taxi Driver
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Impatient Movie Patron
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
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Jazz Club Singer (uncredited)
Esther Castro ...
Club restaurant audience (uncredited)
Anaysha Figueroa ...
Shanika (uncredited)
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Club Patron (uncredited)
Dacia Washington ...
Club Patron (uncredited)

Directed by

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Spike Lee

Written by

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Spike Lee ... (written by)

Produced by

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Jon Kilik ... line producer
Spike Lee ... producer
Monty Ross ... co-producer

Music by

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Bill Lee

Cinematography by

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Ernest R. Dickerson ... (as Ernest Dickerson)

Film Editing by

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Samuel D. Pollard ... (as Sam Pollard)

Editorial Department

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Donna Myers-Rambharose ... apprentice editor
Leander T. Sales ... assistant editor
Brunilda Torres ... first assistant editor
Dave Pultz ... color timer (uncredited)

Casting By

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Robi Reed

Production Design by

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Wynn Thomas

Set Decoration by

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Ted Glass

Costume Design by

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Ruth E. Carter ... (as Ruth Carter)

Makeup Department

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Matiki Anoff ... makeup artist
Clifford Booker ... hair stylist: women
Tom Brumberger ... special makeup effects artist
Larry M. Cherry ... hair stylist: men (as Larry Cherry)
Debbie Deas ... additional makeup artist
Marjorie Durand ... key makeup artist (as Margie Durand)

Production Management

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Preston L. Holmes ... production supervisor (as Preston Holmes)
Brent Owens ... unit manager

Second Unit Director or Assistant Director

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H.H. Cooper ... second assistant director
Randy Fletcher ... first assistant director
Dale M. Nielsen ... second second assistant director
Dale Pierce-Johnson ... second assistant director

Art Department

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Jane Asch ... camera scenic artist
Wilbur L. Ball ... apprentice scenic
Jeff Balsmeyer ... storyboard artist
Martin Bernstein ... construction coordinator
Nancy Gayle Boytos ... set dresser (as Nancy Boytos) / set dresser
Joan Brockschmidt ... second dresser (as Joan Brocksmidt)
Marcia Brown ... art department production assistant
Kimberly Buckley ... assistant to the set decorator (as Kimberley Ann Buckley)
William Butler ... set dresser (as Bill Butler)
Mary Citarella ... scenic artist
Rodney Clark ... set builder
Michael Curry Jr. ... set builder (as Mike Curry Jr.)
Sara D'Alessandro ... scenic sculptor (as Sara D'Allesandro)
Eva P. Davy ... scenic artist (as Eva Davy)
Ellen Doak ... scenic artist
Judith Evans ... scenic artist (as Judith A. Evans)
James Geyer ... scenic shopman
Jeffrey L. Glave ... scenic chargeman
Carmen Griffin ... shop production assistant
John Grimolizzi ... set builder
Bruce Lee Gross ... lead man
Harold Horn ... set builder
Gary Jennings ... scenic artist
Joyce Kubalak-Szuflita ... scenic artist (as Joyce Kubalak)
Kevin Ladson ... first assistant props
Michael Leather ... set dresser
Virginia Lim ... scenic artist
Timothy Main ... set builder (as Tim Main)
Charles McClennahan ... assistant art director
Philip Michelson ... second assistant props
Octavio Molina ... property master
Ken Nelson ... key set builder
Carl Prinzi ... key construction grip
Michael T. Roberts ... assistant art director
Rosalie Russino ... scenic shopwoman (as Rosalle Russino)
Sherryl Sachs ... scenic artist
Mark Paul Selemon ... set dresser (as Mark Selemon)
Charlene Shildmyer ... scenic artist (as Charlene Shildmeyer)
Salvatore Sirico ... set builder (as Sal Sirico)
Pam Stephens ... art department coordinator
Peter Swaine ... construction production assistant (as Peter Swain)
Paul Wardwell ... construction grip
Robert Woods Jr. ... construction grip

Sound Department

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Abdul Malik Abbott ... cable person (as Abdul Abbott)
Marko A. Costanzo ... foley artist (as Marko Costanzo)
Pam DeMetruis-Thomas ... adr editor (as Pam Demetrius)
Kay Denmark ... adr boom operator
William Docker ... assistant sound editor (as Bill Docker)
Stephen Fitzstephens ... sound
Tom Fleischman ... re-recording mixer
Rosa Howell-Thornhill ... sound production assistant
Brian Johnson ... assistant sound editor
Frank Kern ... foley editor
Kevin Lee ... sound editor
Skip Lievsay ... sound designer
Alexander Markowski ... rough cut sound mix engineer
Jann McClary ... apprentice sound editor
Bruce Pross ... foley editor
Andrew Schmetterling ... boom operator
Gail Showalter ... adr editor
Greg Speed ... assistant sound editor (as Gregory L. Speed)
Frank Stettner ... sound recordist
Philip Stockton ... sound editor
Steven Visscher ... foley editor

Special Effects by

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Michael L. Benson ... special effects (as Michael Benson)
Tom Newton ... special effects coordinator
Will Scheck ... special effects
Chris Skutch ... special effects

Visual Effects by

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Don Canfield ... motion control operator: title sequences
Andy Hudson ... visual effects

Stunts

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Roy Farfel ... utility stunts
David S. Lomax ... utility stunts (as David Lomax)
Elliot Santiago ... utility stunts
Jeff Ward ... stunt coordinator

Camera and Electrical Department

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Henry Adebonojo ... second assistant camera
Stuart Allen ... crane technician: Louma crane
Robert M. Andres ... key grip (as Bob Andres)
Martin Andrews ... pre-rigging gaffer
Jonathan Burkhart ... first assistant camera
Beverly Cable ... electric trainee
Ted Churchill ... Steadicam operator
Myra-Lee Cohen ... additional second assistant camera
Val DeSalvo ... best boy electric (as Valerie Desalvo)
Christian Epps ... dimmer board operator
Daniel Finn ... additional grip (as Dan Finn)
Bob Gorelick ... steadicam operator
Andy Harris ... second assistant camera (as Andrew Harris)
Charles Houston ... gaffer
Pamela Katz ... first assistant camera (as Pam Katz)
Tom Kudlek ... dolly grip
David Lee ... still photographer
Larry McConkey ... steadicam operator
Derek McKane ... additional electrician
John Mitchell ... electrician
John Newby ... camera operator
Ed Newins Jr. ... grip
David Noble ... additional grip
John O'Malley ... electrician
Phil Oetiker ... additional camera operator (as Phil Oeticker)
George Pattison ... additional camera operator
Carl Peterson ... grip
Floyd A.B. Rance III ... camera trainee
Nate Ranger ... assistant camera
Paul Reuter ... additional second assistant camera
Keith Salkowski ... electrician
Leslie Saltus-Evans ... camera trainee (as Leslie Saltus)
Susan Starr ... additional first assistant camera
Lois Thompson ... grip trainee
Joan Zierler ... additional first assistant camera

Casting Department

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Paulette D. Clark ... casting assistant (as Paulette Clark)
David H. Kramer ... adr voice casting
Andrea Reed ... extras casting
Tracy Vilar ... extras casting

Costume and Wardrobe Department

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Donna Berwick ... assistant to costume designer
Lisa R. Frucht ... wardrobe assistant (as Lisa Frucht)
Beulah Jones-Black ... assistant to costume designer
Jennifer Lax ... wardrobe assistant
Rita McGhee ... wardrobe production assistant
Susie Money ... wardrobe supervisor
Janinea Shelton ... wardrobe production assistant
Miriam Wong Tsao ... wardrobe assistant (as Miriam Wong)

Location Management

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Bil Haley-Freeman ... assistant location manager
Eric Klein ... location assistant (as Eric Barry Klein)
Brent Owens ... location manager
Dale Watkins ... assistant location manager (as Dale T. Watkins)

Music Department

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Abdul Malik Abbott ... music playback
Vince Caro ... assistant scoring engineer
Stephen Fitzstephens ... music engineer
James Flatto ... assistant music editor
Alex Steyermark ... music editor
Terence Blanchard ... composer: special music (uncredited)
Jennie Hansen ... musician: viola (uncredited)

Transportation Department

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William K. Gaskins ... driver (as Willi Gaskins)
Charlie Hoffman ... driver
Harry J. Leavey ... driver (as Harry Leavey)
James Leavey ... transportation captain
Tom Newins ... driver
Martin Whitfield ... driver

Other crew

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Shannon Amos ... production coordinator
Randall Balsmeyer ... title designer
Alysse Bezahler ... assistant production office coordinator
Terence Blanchard ... technical consultant
Wanda Brooks ... intern
Yolanda Busbee ... production assistant: 40 Acres
Jeffrey W. Byrd ... intern (as Jeffrey Byrd)
Shari L. Carpenter ... office production assistant
Melvin Tyrone Clarke ... intern
Eric Daniel ... set production assistant
Lee Davis ... craft service
Lyle Dickey ... intern
Mike Ellis ... set production assistant (as Michael Ellis)
Michael Fleming ... technical consultant
Susan D. Fowler ... production coordinator: Forty Acres
Michael Gaynor ... dailies projectionist
Brian Harris ... parking production assistant
Donald Harrison ... technical consultant
Van Hayden ... craft service (as Van A. Hayden)
Patricia Ann Holmes ... assistant auditor (as Patricia Holmes)
Anthony L. Jamison ... apprentice
Debra D. Jeffreys ... production office coordinator
Desirée Jellerette ... production secretary
Kristen M. Johnson ... intern
Damon Jones ... intern
Janice Kambara ... intern
Erik Barry Klein ... parking coordinator
Erik Knight ... set production assistant
Bill Lee ... technical consultant
Cinqué Lee ... video archivist
Leticia Lee ... assistant auditor
Palesa Ka Letlaka ... intern
Sam Longoria ... publicity assistant: Universal
Karen Mason ... intern
Tiffany McLinn Lore ... intern (as Tiffany McClinn)
Larry Mims ... assistant: Mr. Washington
Ayesha Morales ... intern
Robert Nickson ... production controller
Fred Nielson ... set production assistant (as Fred Nielsen)
Eric Oden ... auditor
Daryl Patterson ... craft service
Thomas Patrick Petrilla ... production assistant
Traci Proctor ... office production assistant
Kia B. Puriefoy ... set production assistant (as Kia Puriefoy)
Simona Ross ... intern
Amada R. Sandoval ... intern
Jean-Andre Sassine ... parking production assistant
Winsome Sinclair ... intern (as Winsome GM Sinclair)
Audra C. Smith ... production assistant: 40 Acres (as Audra Smith)
Earl Smith ... assistant: Mr. Lee
Kevin A. Smith ... intern
Anna C. Southall ... unit publicist (as Anna Southall)
Susan Stuart ... intern
Doug G. Watson ... set production assistant (as Doug Watson)
Daniel Wheatcroft ... studio executive
Latanya White ... intern
Harold R. Williams Jr. ... assistant dailies projectionist (as Harold Williams)
Nike Zachmanoglou ... continuity / script supervisor
Coati Mundi ... adr voice (uncredited)

Production Companies

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Distributors

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Special Effects

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Other Companies

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Storyline

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Plot Summary

Opens with Bleek as a child learning to play the trumpet, his friends want him to come out and play but mother insists he finish his lessons. Bleek grows into adulthood and forms his own band - The Bleek Gilliam Quartet. The story of Bleek's and Shadow's friendly rivalry on stage which spills into their professional relationship and threatens to tear apart the quartet. Written by David

Plot Keywords
Taglines A Spike Lee joint. See more »
Genres
Parents Guide View content advisory »
Certification

Additional Details

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Also Known As
  • Variations on the Mo' Better Blues (United States)
  • A Love Supreme (United States)
  • Cuanto más, ¡mejor! (Spain)
  • Mais e Melhores Blues (Brazil)
  • Quanto Mais Melhor (Portugal)
  • See more »
Runtime
  • 129 min
Country
Language
Color
Aspect Ratio
Sound Mix
Filming Locations

Box Office

Budget $10,000,000 (estimated)

Did You Know?

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Trivia Denzel Washington's trumpet is played by Terence Blanchard and Branford Marsalis plays the sax for Wesley Snipes. The music you hear in the movie when the actors are "playing" was performed by Branford's working band which was used for The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (1992) when Jay Leno took over. See more »
Goofs During the performance of Bleek's "Pop Top Urban 40 Funk Love ... Song", Bleek's headgear changes from hat to baseball cap. See more »
Movie Connections Featured in Presumed Innocent/Chicago Joe and the Showgirl/Mo' Better Blues/Cinema Paradiso (1990). See more »
Soundtracks Harlem Blues See more »
Crazy Credits Flavor Flave of the rap group Public Enemy spells out the letters in "Universal" as the studio logo appears on the screen. See more »
Quotes Clarke: 'Cause mo better makes it mo better.
See more »

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